Thursday, December 30, 2010

What Are You Going To Do With All Those Trees?

I came up with this vision for our yard. My vision kept growing. I found neat plants and trees that I wanted to incorporate. I had so much I wanted to do, that I made a three-year plan to get it all done.

My first year was going to include clearing the dirt for the new flowerbeds and planting all the trees. I loved climbing trees as a kid and I wanted the trees to get in the ground as fast as possible so they could grow and be big enough to climb by the time little JCrew’s were welcomed into the family.

Teddy Bear Magnolia bloom
My plan included 16 trees in the backyard alone! Mr. JCrew wanted to keep the middle yard open for future soccer practice, and I wanted to create more privacy, so our trees would line up against the fence.

Forest Pansy Redbud

Because we wanted to create privacy, we mixed the variety of trees between deciduous and evergreen. Deciduous trees lose their leaves in the winter while evergreens keep their leaves all year round. My favorite evergreen growing up was the Southern Magnolia. Our back yard is not big enough to support the size of the Magnolia, but I found a variety that would.

Eagleston Holly
Magnolia’s come in all shapes and sizes. Some have giant leaves and some have smaller flowers. I liked the big leaves on Southern Magnolia’s. I was introduced to the Teddy Bear variety that only gets 20 feet tall and has the huge leaves. I bought two to anchor in the back corners of the yard.
Teddy Bear Magnolia

We bought the small size so that it was easier to plant. We nicknamed these trees our “Love Fern’s” because we planted them the weekend Mr. JCrew was discharged from the Air Force and was moving home for good.
Baby Teddy Bear Magnolia - April 2009
Teddy Bear Magnolia - June 2010

Buying smaller plants is a good strategy. It makes you appreciate the growth the plant gives you. It’s satisfying to look back at the size it once was and see how far along it has come thanks to your love and care. Yet, if you need instant privacy, buying big would be your way to go. You may need to have a professional help you dig the massive hole.

Ivory Silk Lilac
Among the collection of trees we aquired, we have a beautuful Ivory Silk Lilac that blooms in June; three Chinese Fringe Trees that bloom shortly after they get their leaves in April/May; an Eastern Redbud that blooms first in the Spring; two Eagleston Hollies that keep a bushy form; and four Yuma Crepe Myrtles that line by the gate. Two more Acoma Crepe Myrtles are randomly placed and are beautiful weeping trees.
Chinese Fringe Tree bloom - April 2010

I took my time researching the trees. The Yumas had the light lavendar color I wanted, the Eagleston's had the shape I needed and the Fringe trees were just gorgeous! I found them off a Southern Living Blog (TheGrumpyGardener.)

Yuma Crepe Myrtle bloom
Our trees keep growing and I love taking pictures to compare to the year before. My favorite time of year is Spring! I walk around inspecting the trees and looking at their new buds coming in!
Buds on Magnolia
Not only are trees beautiful to look at, but they provide housing for the birds and shade for the animals. I love seeing the birds make nests and take cover in our trees.
Happy Planting!

In This Post:
Yuma Crepe Myrtles (12 ft)
Acoma Crepe Myrtles (10 ft)
Eagleston Holly (25 ft)
Teddy Bear Magnolia (20 ft)
Eastern Redbud (30 ft)
Chinese Fringe Tree (25 ft)
Ivory Silk Lilac (25 ft)
Front Yard
Forest Pansy Redbud (25 ft)
October Glory Maple (40 ft)

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