The weather feels just about right for us to start getting out of our winter funk. I am finally putting away my chunky winter sweaters and beginning to look at all the spring-cleaning I have to do. Why can’t blinds clean themselves – that’s what I want to know!
Enough about my spring-cleaning (which I’m dreading), let’s talk about plants. How do you get that early spring interest? What is best to plant for flowers and bud interest during March? Hey, slow down with the questions – I’m going to get to that.
Below are a few suggestions –
Magnolia × soulangeana: Saucer Magnolia
This Magnolia is the most recognizable tree blooming at this time. It’s tall, has beautiful gray bark, and bright pink flower petals. This outstanding tree at maturity grows to 25ft tall by 25ft wide. The flowers smell great and it tolerates clay soil. Definitely a must for anyone looking to add a great ‘show-stopper’ to his or her property.
Witch hazel has to be in my top 10 all time favorite plants! It’s so graceful and unexpected in the landscape, and that earns it recognition on this post. This variety has been blooming since February and will continue until the end of this month. It has bright yellow flowers clustered all along the stems and has oddly shaped petals that are narrow/ribbon like. It’s an upright, vase shaped plant that grows 12/15ft in spread and height at maturity. Another must have! I’m telling you – you need this plant!
(Close-up of the flowers)
(Image from above the plant, after blooming!)
Helleborus orientalis: Helleborus
This perennial has a delicate and soft way about it. It’s a small perennial that reaches 1/1.5ft in height and spread. Helleborus does well in heavy shade and with deer! The leaves are actually evergreen which makes it a great treat all year long. Helleborus looks wonderful as a naturalizer, as a cluster groundcover or under trees. A perfect little addition to any garden.
Forsythia × intermedia 'Show off: Forsythia
I wouldn’t say that I’m a lover of Forsythia, but it seems like everyone else is – which is why it’s on this list. This variety is a part of the Proven Winners and has brighter flowers then older varieties. It blooms from end to end, which is really great! Its mature size is between 4/6ft tall and wide, which makes it a compact version of Forsythia.
Acer rubrum: Red Maple
Before the leaves appear on this wonderful tree, clusters of red winged fruit (called samara) develop all over in mid-March to early April. At mature height this tree grows to 40-70ft and can spread to 30-50ft. Not only does this tree have beautiful spring interest but it doubles for fall color! Red Maples can be used as street trees, specimen trees in the turf, and for creating shade.
I hope you enjoyed this post as it has come to an end! Looking into the future I will be posting more about interest for different times in the year, so you can develop your landscape into a 4-season interest monster.