Work continues slowly on my white garden. Proceeding backwards to how one should, I am adding in the structural plantings after having put in a handful of perennials. A few weeks ago I planted 3-quart pots of Camellia sasanqua ‘Northern Lights’ and C. japonica ‘Morning Glow.’ ‘Northern Lights’ has a ribbon of pink around the edge of the petals, while ‘Morning Glow’ is pure white.
The tricky thing with single-color gardens is that they can become quite static. One way of avoiding this is implementing lots of interesting textures and forms in the plant material, but when plants enter winter dormancy, it’s possible to lose this dimension. So incorporating small tinges of color can help the primary flower color pop. I’m hopeful this will happen with the pink fringe to the petals; from a distance, it probably won’t register at all.
Still looking for some additional evergreen structure. In my winter sowing experiment, I’m going to try Magnolia grandiflora (or what I think is Magnolia grandiflora). My mother found the plant, about 24″ high, growing in the woods on the edge of her property and transplanted it into her garden, where it’s effectively doubled in size every year for the past four years. I’ve got a handful of its seed pods and I shall see what happens. Assuming it works, in order to actually install one in the garden I’m going to have to remove an oak tree that gives me the shivers every time I see it; although I’ve been assured it’s healthy, I’m convinced that it’s going to drop a giant limb in my neighbor’s yard. Have I mentioned it’s a very ugly shape as well?
Also thinking about Sciadopitys verticillata, or maybe a nice Podocarpus. I love yews, but I think I’d be asking for deer problems. Maybe once I get a fence put in (keeping with the theme of working backwards…).