Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Middle South

December, 2011
Regional Report

Shows & Events

Plants for Winter Interest
The North Carolina Arboretum in Ashville will offer the training class Plants for Winter Interest on Wednesday, December 7, at 1 pm and again at 3:30 pm. Horticulturist Alison Arnold will lead the walk through the Arboretum's gardens, examining the many plants that lend their beauty to the quiet days of the cold season. Cost is $23 for members, or $27 for the general public. Register at the Arboretum's Web site at

Favorite or New Plant

Variegated Holly Osmanthus
Native to Japan, this osmanthus (O. heterophyllus) is a slow grower that will eventually mature at 8 to 10 feet tall and wide. Foliage is glossy green edged with cream, with spiny edges that resemble English holly (Ilex aquifolium). Leaves are opposite one another on the stem, however, rather than alternate. Tiny, white fragrant flowers bloom in autumn.

The variegated plant is slightly less cold tolerant than the species and likes protection from winter winds. Grow in full sun and fertile, well-drained soil, and provide consistent moisture.


Today's site banner is by Marilyn and is called "Salvia regla 'Royal'"