I've slowly been moving the garden away from a focus on perennials to a focus on trees and shrubs. My tastes as a gardener are changing. I still love my purple coneflowers and veronica and salvia and my globeflowers and I always will. However, I'm loving the deadheading, weeding and dividing less and less every year. Scaling back the number of perennials in favour of trees, shrubs and groundcovers that will cover more garden space with less maintenance is the route I'm following.
I went to the garden centre looking for a tree to replace a sad, droopy Rose of Sharon that I had been cheering on for a decade. After a lacklustre and messy performance this summer I decided it had to go. I headed to the garden centre to find a replacement and as I pulled into the parking lot a tree ablaze in a fiery red caught my eye. It was a Katsura. Oh, I shopped around looking at all the great selections on sale but the Katsura had won me over and was as good as planted in my yard. The colour is amazing! I visit it often to sniff around...apparently when the leaves drop the tree gives off a scent similar to cotton candy. Admittedly caring for the tree will present some challenges. Katsuras like moist soil and my garden is very very dry. I will have to commit to a regular watering schedule in July and August. This will also help a Japanese Bloodgood Maple which lives opposite the Katsura and suffers from leaf scorch when neglected in the summer heat.
This isn't a Katsura. It's a maple out in Flamborough. It pretty much glows doesn't it? When mature the Katsura should take on a similar shape. It is going to be a thrill to watch it grow and glow.