Thursday, November 16, 2006

Patience Rewarded: The Ghost Emerges

Patience is definitely an asset when it comes to planting ornamental trees in the garden. Some magnolias are glacially slow to flower, and Japanese maples can try the most patient gardener. I can also tell you that waiting for a birch tree to develop its white bark, when you start with a tiny sapling, is rather like going to a snail convention. Betula utilis jacquemontii, the Himalayan white birch, is a tree that makes garden writers get all mushy-prosed, rhapsodizing about this queen of birches, said to have the whitest bark of all. Greyswood Ghost is a particularly nice example of the Himalayan birch, and I obtained a small (small, as in "little brown stick-small") specimen of this birch a number of years ago, and planted it in a prominent spot by a garden path, and prepared to be dazzled by this snow-white beauty. However, after a couple of years it was still as brown as a June bug's back, and the tree got moved to a less prominent spot to await further developments. The bark, after quite a few years, did become rather attractive, if you like brown birch trees... it is shown above in January of this year. Then this fall, as if a stage curtain was being lifted, the brown bark peeled off and the tree stepped out in its new, pristine white finery. It was worth the wait: Posted by Picasa

Do you have any run of the mill plants?
I have a sneaking suspicion that you are building a botanic garden, only you are the last one to know it!! I learn something new with every post of yours! Thanks!
Sissy... I really am more of a collector than anything; I don't have any great interest in landscaping, so you'll never see a picture of our garden in Fine Gardening magazine; I just like plants.
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