Fragrant Sumac features yellow flowers, which bloom March-April. It is monoecious; male and female flowers appear separately on the same plant. Female flowers produce berries, which are eaten by birds. Leaves and twigs are aromatic when bruised. Fall foliage is orange to red to reddish-purple. Branches will root themselves where they touch the ground. Fragrant Sumac is a host plant for butterfly and moth larvae (caterpillars), including Red-banded Hairstreak (Calycopis cecrops). Use Fragrant Sumac in mass plantings, foundations, borders, and for stabilizing slopes.
Common Hoptree is a small, deciduous, flowering tree or pruned shrub. Tiny, white flowers bloom in June. The flowers can have an unpleasant fragrance, and are pollinated by carrion flies. The fruit can be used as a substitute for hops. Common Hoptree is a host plant for butterfly and moth larvae (caterpillars), including Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus) and Giant Swallowtail (Papilio cresphontes). Plant Common Hoptree as a specimen or in groups in your yard. It can also be used as a hedge or for a screen.
English Lavender has fragrant, gray-green foliage. Its lavender-blue to dark purple flowers bloom in the summer on long stems; they make excellent cut or dried flowers. Flowers and foliage are used to scent sachets and potpourris, and as a culinary herb. Use English Lavender in beds, borders, herb gardens, or rock gardens.
Creeping Juniper is a low-growing evergreen groundcover with long, trailing branches and soft-textured leaves. It tolerates hot and dry conditions, air pollution, and salt spray. Use massed on slopes, as a foundation plant, or in rock gardens.
Chinese Holly is a dense, rounded evergreen shrub. Its small, white, fragrant flowers bloom in May. Since it is dioecious (separate male and female plants), a male must be in the area to pollinate the female flowers for fruit production. Plant in a location protected from cold winter winds. Use Chinese Holly as a specimen or foundation plant, or plant in groups for a hedge or privacy screen.
The floral display of American Witchhazel is unique. Its fragrant, cream to yellow flowers with tassle-like, crumpled petals bloom September-December, persisting for some time after leaf drop.
Gingko is a deciduous tree with unique, fan-shaped leaves. It is dioecious (separate male and female trees), but only male trees should be planted, since the fruit of female trees is messy and malodorous. Its yellow fall leaves can persist for weeks, then suddenly drop within a day. This cold-hardy tree is usually deep-rooted and resistant to wind and snow damage. It tolerates salt and poor soil and air quality, making it a good choice for urban conditions. Use Gingko as a lawn tree or street tree.
Shrubby Cinquefoil is a low-growing, long-blooming, deciduous shrub. It has small, grayish-green, compound leaves and is covered with showy, yellow flowers from June-September. This plant has excellent winter hardiness. Shrubby Cinquefoil has special value for native bees, and attracts beneficial insects, which prey upon insect pests. Use as a specimen plant, in shrub borders, or as an informal hedge.
European Hornbeam is a medium-sized deciduous tree with a lovely, oval shape. Its smooth, gray bark has vertical grooves, giving the appearance of rippling muscles along the trunk. It is monoecious (separate male and female flowers grow on the same tree). The small, greenish female and yellowish male flowers appear in March before the leaves emerge, followed by drooping clusters of small nutlets in the summer. The leaves turn yellow in the fall. Use European Hornbeam as a shade or street tree. It can also be used as a hedge or screen planting; it responds well to heavy pruning, which is best done from fall to mid-winter.
Mountain Maple is a small, multi-trunked, understory tree that thrives at high elevations. Small, yellowish-green flowers bloom in clusters on upright stems in early summer. Its leaves turn shades of yellow, orange, and red in the fall. Use as a specimen tree or in shady areas. Good choice for preventing erosion on steep slopes and stream banks. Mountain Maple may be difficult to find commercially. Tell your local garden center or nursery about your interest in this tree.