Picking the right cultivar . . .

treeguy_ny USDA z6a WNYJune 19, 2012

Hi all,

I'm looking for some advice on picking the right dwarf conifer cultivar. My employer is letting me pick out the plants for the foundation planting at our new building. I was given three stipulations:

1) The plant should mature at 24 to 30 inches tall (61-76cm). The first 40 inches (just over a meter) of the backdrop wall is stonework that my employer does not want overly obscured.

2) The plant has to be readily available at a decent size, i.e. my employer wants a decent sized specimen to fill the area rather than say a 2 year graft.

3) Being "deer resistant" or "deer proof" is a plus - we have a very large herd in the area that decimates landscaping. The local government has had to resort to bait and shoot operations just to keep the population from growing unchecked.

Any recommendations? If you have something in mind that fits these requirements, please let me know!


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I don't know if a conifer will be your answer or not. To get something maturing at 24-30" you're truly in the very small dwarf to miniature class of conifer. And in that size range most are very dense so the obscure issue will come into play.

You could do some ground cover conifers coordinated with other more open structured plantings such as Picea pungens ' Glauca Procumbens' or some of the many ground cover Junipers.


    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 2:48PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i would just quit the job..

and look for a job with a more reasonable employer ...

there is so much wrong with your listed parameters.. that i dont even know where to start ...

can you back out of this assignment.. or will you have to quit????


    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 3:58PM
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Platycladus orientalis 'Aurea nana' might fit your requirement -- except for the deer-proof bit...

Another option might be one of the high-grafted weeping junipers, such as J. horizontalis 'Blue Chip' -- it will never get higher than the original standard, just makes a more lush cascade over the years....

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 7:58PM
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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

Deer tend to stay away from variegates as well as yellows. If you plant something that is easily maintained thru pruning, you're good to go for a super long time. I'd probably recommend Thuja occidentalis 'Fire Chief'.


Here is a link that might be useful: Sooner Plant Farm - Thuja occidentalis 'Fire Chief'

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 9:57AM
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