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By ILPARW on Apr 25, 2019 12:17 PM, concerning plant: Savin Juniper (Juniperus sabina 'Tamariscifolia')

This is a variety and a cultivar that comes from the mountains of southern Europe. It is a groundcover that grows about 1 and a half foot high that has very horizontal branches. The bluish-green foliage has some awl-like needles, but most are scaly so the foliage is basically soft, and like the regular Savin species, the crushed foliage has that strong savin fragrance. Many plants have been susceptible to Phomopsis Blight that is a fungus disease that picks on junipers, especially some groundcover species. Some selections have been taken from this variety that have good Phomopsis resistance as 'Tam No Blight.' It has been commonly sold at many conventional nurseries in the Midwest, the Mid-Atlantic, and the Northeast USA as one of a number of groundcover junipers.

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By ILPARW on Apr 25, 2019 11:44 AM, concerning plant: Dwarf Japanese Garden Juniper (Juniperus procumbens)

This Japgarden Juniper is commonly sold at Conventional nurseries for groundcover use in the Midwest, the Mid-Atlantic, the Northeast, and the upper South of the USA.. Its foliage is gray-green and all the needles are awl-shaped in threes and the foliage is very spiny and prickly. It is nice to look at, but don't touch. It dies best in full sun and an open siting.

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By ILPARW on Apr 25, 2019 11:28 AM, concerning plant: Creeping Juniper (Juniperus horizontalis)

This Creeping Juniper is native to southern Canada and the northern USA. It is a groundcover shrub that gets 1 to 2 feet high by more than 8 feet wide. Most of its foliage is composed of the soft, scale-like needles rather than the prickly, awl-like needles, so it is soft to the touch. It is found in some beach & dune habitats and on dry soil cliffs and slopes. The green or blue-green foliage gets a purple tinge in winter. There is a large list of cultivars selected for horticulture that are sold and planted a good amount in landscapes as groundcovers.

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By ILPARW on Apr 25, 2019 11:00 AM, concerning plant: Juniper (Juniperus)

There are about 50 to 70 species of this genus of evergreen coniferous trees, shrubs, and groundcovers that occur throughout the Northern Hemisphere, with 13 native to North America. The Juniper is part of the Cypress Family of Cupressaceae along with Cypress (Cupressus), False-Cypress (Chamaecyparis), Arborvitae (Thuja), Incense-Cedar (Libocedrus), and some others. The purple, almost blue, gray, blue-black or reddish-brown, waxy seed (female) cones have fleshy, fused scales that make the structure look like "berries" that are usually only on "female" plants. The juniper berries are used to flavour gin. The tiny male cones are usually just on separate "male" (staminate) plants. Most species produce the juvenile foliage that is awl-like, prickly, tiny needles. Some species only produce the awl-like needles that are very prickly. The mature foliage is scale-like and overlapping in pairs or threes, closely pressed to the rounded or four-sided branchlets with glands that produce the sticky fragrant or pungent resin. Most species have some of both awl-like and scale-like, but some only have the scale-like foliage when mature and are soft to touch, often fragrant when crushed. Because the soft, pinkish, rot-resistant wood is fragrant, junipers are often referred to as being a kind of Cedar or as Redcedar.

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By ILPARW on Apr 25, 2019 10:22 AM, concerning plant: Flaky Juniper (Juniperus squamata 'Blue Star')

This Blue Star Meyer Single-seed Juniper is commonly planted in the yards and landscapes of many homeowners and some semi-professional landscapes in the Midwest, the Mid-Atlantic, the Northeast, and much of the South in the USA. It is sold at all the big box stores and many conventional nurseries as a cheap woody plant. I don't understand why anyone really likes it, even when it is some specimens that are in good condition. I've seen a good number get icky with dead and brown areas as time goes on. The mother species of Single-seed Juniper and the Meyer cultivar from which it came also get ratty looking in time with brown areas. It is not as bad in more northern regions with cooler summers versus really warm, humid summers. This plant is very blue, and many like to stick it in with woody plants that have yellow or red foliage for the growing season, as the Goldthread False Cypress and dwarf red barberries; all of which together looks just awful, and so artificial. Better to use flowers for colour.

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By ILPARW on Apr 25, 2019 10:03 AM, concerning plant: Flaky Juniper (Juniperus squamata)

This Singleseed Juniper is native to western China, the Himalayas, and Afghanistan. It is a very variable plant from small tree to a low or prostrate shrub ranging from 6 feet to 25 feet high. It has prickly grey-green to blue-green foliage of all overlapping awl-shaped needles. The straight species is not used in horticulture. Instead, there are a number of cultivars in the form of low and prostrate shrubs. The prostrate forms are very similar to the Japanese Garden Juniper of Juniperus procumbens. I saw one photo of the mother species in Dr. Dirr's woody plant class at the University of Illinois, and it looked like the world's ugliest juniper.

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By stilldew on Apr 25, 2019 9:48 AM, concerning plant: Coleus (Coleus scutellarioides Campfire)

The colors in this one are the most vivid of the rust/orange coleus I have grown.

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By Australis on Apr 25, 2019 5:50 AM, concerning plant: Orchid (Fowlerara Edith Spence)

This is a complex intergeneric hybrid resulting from the cross of Orchid (Myrmecatavola Frances Fox) with False Laelia (Pseudolaelia vellozicola).

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By ILPARW on Apr 24, 2019 4:17 PM, concerning plant: Monkey Puzzle Tree (Araucaria araucana)

I've seen some in conservatories in big pots. There is a nice 10 to 12 feet high specimen growing outside all year next to the big greenhouse of a retail garden center in Chester Springs of southeast Pennsylvania in Zone 6b that has been doing fine for over 10 years. This tree is native to Chile and western Argentina in the cool climate, where it can snow in some places, in and near the lower Andes, and is the national tree of Chile. It goes back to the Age of the Dinosaurs. It is a member of the coniferous family of Auraucariaceae that is a mostly of the Southern Hemisphere . This tree can get up to 150 feet high with a seven feet wide trunk, but it takes a long time as it is slow growing. The male trees bear 3 to 5 inch wide rounded, spiny cones and the female trees bear 6 to 12 inch wide rounded spiny cones that bear the seeds about the size of almonds and are edible, even made into flour or fermented into a beverage. The species is endangered in its native habitat by logging and clearing land for agriculture. It does well in England, where it was a big fad for awhile in the 1800's. It is mentioned in the old movie of The Ghost and Mrs Muir.

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By ILPARW on Apr 24, 2019 7:42 AM, concerning plant: Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus 'Globosa')

My biggest customer in southeast Pennsylvania with a diverse landscape has two specimens of what must be this Globe Eastern White Pine. One is in a small confined, part-shade location and is only about 3 feet by 5 feet in size. The other is larger of about 6 feet by 8 feet on a slope in a large bed in part-shade. The origin of this cultivar is unknown. Someone must have taken a branch mutation from a White Pine and grafted it onto a regular White Pine stock, and kept these grafts going, and various specialty or large, diverse, conventional nurseries sell some. This plant grows about 6 inches a year.

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