[NAFEX] nafex Digest, Vol 35, Issue 37

Richard Moyer ramoyer at gmail.com
Mon Dec 12 16:58:14 EST 2005

Though in TN, I'm also in Zone 6.  Some things that work well for us:
We pulled out our foundation plants and put in Rabbiteye blueberries, where
they get only about 1 hr direct sun a day..  Fall color is now at peak,
plants covered with reds melding to purple and orange.  Best color in our
yard now for weeks, and as Hal noted, leaves hang into the single digits.

Yew (Taxus spp.) is an evergreen, tough, easily shaped, and has an edible
sweet-syrupy-piney fruit BUT the seed has potent cardiotoxins.  Needs more
sun to fruit than the two Eleagnus below, but survives in shade, growing
much more slowly.

3 ideas from the Eleagnus family:
*Eleagnus multiflora* (goumi) is semi-evergreen, spring bloomer, June fruit,
silver-green foliage.  Lucille Whitman (Whitman Farms) propagates and sells
a large-fruited cultivar.  An easily shaped, better behaved Eleagnus.  Ours
do well under pawpaw and black locust trees.
*Eleagnus pungens*.  Oct-Nov bloom scent is heavy, intoxicating, M. Dirr
says similar to gardenia, definitely a draw for that time of year.  Fruits
hangs all winter and ripens in March here if mild, into April.  Hence a
first fruit.  The plant can be rangy if unmanaged, throwing lanky suckers
reaching into nearby limbs, but have seen it locally as a well-shaped
evergreen shrub, either as individually shaped plants or a high, thin
hedge.  This Eleagnus can be invasive, climbing up, through and over
anything above it.
*Hippophae (Sea buckthorn)*
Widely planted in Europe, Dirr says "fruit is as handsome as is the soft
grayish green foliage" .  Strangely, languishes in rich soil, and thrives in
poor sandy soil.  Have seen and tasted fruit in June in western Oregon; some
selections hold fruit into winter.  Need male and females for pollination.
Drawback for your site may be too much shade.

All three of the above will sucker and spread if left alone, which may be a
disadvantage, or helpful in filling in.

Richard Moyer
Zone 6, East TN

   Ornamental Blueberries (Ginda Fisher)
>  I have some white cedar foundation plantings that are getting
> overgrown.  I am thinking of removing them, and wondering what to
> replace them with.  It would be fun to put in something that fruits. .
> .  I am contemplating blueberries.
> I am in zone 6.  The location is on the south side of my house, but
> it's mostly shaded by oak trees, so I don't actually expect to get much
> fruit.  I need something tall and narrow:  Mature width should be less
> than 4', and height could be 15' or so, and should be at least twice
> the width for esthetic reasons.
> Anyone have suggestions in a tall, narrow, northern blueberry?
> Preferably one with good fall color and red winter twigs?
> Any other fruity suggestions?
> Thanks,
> Ginda
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