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You should grow Winterberry (Ilex verticillata). I just got one at the most recent PAX sale at the JC Arboretum. This one is extra special. It is a yellow one. What a jewel.
Winterberry is one of those plants that have several seasons of wonder. The berries will stay throughout the winter and come spring small white flowers will appear. While it is in the holly family, it isn’t prickly like a traditional holly, (one of my rules it not to plant anything that hurts) but has some of the same benefits. It is deciduous though…so keep in mind when placing.
It’s native to the southeast US. Interestingly, when grown in a more web climate it produces a rich thicket, but in drier places it remains a tight shrub.
Regardless, I am so excited. Plus, this one has these yellow orange berries. Bonus!
I don’t know about you, but as a somewhat beginner gardner whenever I have new plants, I am always monitoring their progress. The fall for me sometimes comes with anxiety if I have a new deciduous shrub or tree. If I haven’t gone through an autumn with a new plant and I start seeing the yellowing of the leaves, I have to remind myself that this is natural.
Many new and even experienced gardeners wonder if their plant is dying once and a while, and we all must remember–
Two important things about gardening:
- Consider the season when evaluating your plant’s health. The fall is the time when leaves change, crinkle and fall off of deciduous plants. Labeling plants really help to keep the sanity, in case you forget if a new shrub is supposed to lose it’s leaves.
- Accepting death as a part of gardening in order to enjoy it for the long term. Many people say to me…I tried gardening, but everything died….when I dug a little deeper, most of the time just a few plants died and people give up. You have to be willing to let go when you are a gardener…some things live and some things die. That is one of the most valuable lessons I have learned on my gardening journey. What works in one person’s garden, may not in yours. That’s ok. Just keep at it. Your persistence will be rewarded.