Book Announcement! My First Published Book!

FotorCreated BOOK PROMO 2 600 pixAfter two years of working on my book I am excited to announce that it is finally published! A Guide to Northeastern Gardening: Journeys of a Garden Designer is a comprehensive guide to gardening in plant hardiness zones 3-9.  My goal for the book is to share information on a number of gardening topics based on my experiences as a landscape designer over the years.BOOK PHOTO

A Little Bit About the Book:

A Guide to Northeastern Gardening is a comprehensive guide of valuable information on plants hardy in a range of zones from 3-9, and gardening techniques backed up by my own personal experiences as a professional landscape designer, along with answers to frequently asked questions. Learn about landscape design principles, butterfly gardening, deer resistant plants, long blooming perennials, globe and weeping evergreens, flowering trees and shrubs, native plantings, shade gardening and more. Whether you are a novice or experienced gardener, A Guide to Northeastern Gardening will help you to create your own dream garden. Come along on my journey into the world of gardening!

A Little Bit About the Author:

Lee Miller is a professional landscape/garden designer involved in the horticultural industry since 1996. Having started a gardening blog in 2010, she is the author of over 150 articles on general gardening, landscape design principles, gardening tips, planting, pruning, garden maintenance, feature plants and more. Her published book, “A Guide to Northeastern Gardening”, is an accumulation of information touching on a wide variety of gardening topics, all backed up by her own personal experiences.

Previews and further information are available on the following links:

Updated for 2016: Now in Amazon Softcover!

Amazon Kindle

Also here is a link to the full story behind the author and the book. I hope to share my gardening experiences with you!

As Always…Happy Gardening!

2015 Lee@ A Guide to Landscape Design & Maintenance.

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A Tree for all Seasons: Coral Bark Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Sango Kaku’)

Coral Bark Maple Winter

CORAL BARK MAPLE WINTER (Coral Bark Maple in Center)

When designing a garden for all seasons it is important to include cultivars that have both good structure and eye-catching bark or foliage. Coral Bark Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Sango Kaku’) is one of my all time favorites on all accounts. Coral Bark Maple is a vase-shaped deciduous shrub or small tree that is native to Japan, China and Korea.  Hardy to zones 5-8, this beautiful specimen grows to a mature height and width of approximately 15-20 feet and displays delicate palmate lobed leaves that are approximately 2-5″ in length and almost fern-like in appearance. The Coral Bark Maple is considered to be one of the most prized of the upright palmate maples during the winter months for its stunning coral-red bark that appears after the leaves fall.

CORAL BARK MAPLE SPRING

  The name of this cultivar,  ‘Sangu Kaku’ means coral tower (sango meaning sea coral and kaku meaning tower) as if to suggest this lovely pink-barked specimen resembles coral rising upward from a reef.  The foliage display starts in spring  when leaves emerge as a beautiful yellow-green with red edging and small reddish-purple flowers are an added surprise when the tree is viewed up close.

CORAL BARK MAPLE SUMMER

As the season progresses a succession of colorful foliage continues to occur.  In the summer months once yellow-green foliage with red tips turns to light green and the insignificant flowers are followed by samaras that ripen in late summer.  In autumn the show continues as the foliage turns to an amazing bright golden-yellow and then to a fiery orange before the leaves drop.  The coral-red bark is visible as the temperatures and leaves fall and the show continues throughout winter and can be striking against a backdrop of snow.

CORAL BARK MAPLE FALL (OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER)

 Acer palmatum ‘Sango Kaku’ prefer to be grown in full to partial shade and should be sheltered from harsh drying winds.  They prefer a moist, organically rich, well-drained soil but are adaptable to a variety of soil types.  Coral Bark Maple requires little to no maintenance but should be monitored for insects or disease on a routine basis as one would with any prized landscape tree.   Best pink coloration appears on young branches.   In order to stimulate new growth of stems with better pink coloration the tree can be occasionally pruned.  Since Japanese maples are generally grown for their attractive foliage and shape,  ‘Sango Kaku’ is best served as a focal point in a location where the beautiful pink bark in winter and colorful foliage can be appreciated.   It will fit into just about any type of landscape whether a foundation planting, formal or informal garden, grouped in a perennial/shrub border or as a single specimen and will bring years of enjoyment to you outdoor space.

As Always…Happy Gardening!

       Author:  Lee@Landscape Design By Lee, 2013, All Rights Reserved

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Summer Foliage Combinations

Foliage Combinations

Combining different types of foliage and texture is important in making a garden look its best.  After blooms are gone various combinations of foliage along with the basic backbone of your garden can add impact.  An assortment of colorful evergreens displaying hues of golds, blues and greens when used along with shrubs and perennials in the landscape will provide interest all year round and give that additional “wow” factor to your space.

coral bells, sedge and euonymus

Use opposite colors on the color wheel to provide contrast by combining cool colors with warm. For example:  In this sun to part-shade garden, combining the dark burgundy foliage of Heuchera ‘Palace Purple’ with the golden foliage of the evergreen Euonymus ‘Gold Spot’ provides a nice contrast. Now adding the wispy foliage of Japanese Golden Sedge makes a perfect trio.

grass

In a brighter and sunnier location grasses can be used along with evergreens to show a variety of texture while the grasses add movement to the garden as seen above.

hosta MINI Hosta Maui Buttercup

Foliage alone such as the lime-yellow coloration and interesting leaves of this Hosta ‘Maui Buttercups’ can add interest to a darker location…

coral bells assorted[1]

as well as this combination of Heuchera (Coral Bells) along with Juniper in a brighter area.

Garden design involves careful thought and consideration to combinations that will work over time and provide constant interest to either a sunny or shaded area. Foliage alone can also provide a beautiful setting when trying to achieve a low maintenance garden since foliage requires less management. Combining complementary colors along with various foliage and texture types will add interest and impact to your garden. For additional reading on foliage combinations also visit my other blog at A Guide to Northeastern Gardening.

As Always…Happy Gardening!

Author: Lee@Landscape Design By Lee, 2013, All Rights Reserved

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