Garden School:


Garden School:
Teaching this week: Rose pruning (as always!) and water management

Monday, 16 April 2012

The Escallonia That Lived!

I've seen a lot of troubled Escallonia over the last couple of years: a shrub that is normally unkillable seems to be suffering after the two successive cold winters, not to mention the wet one just gone.

This one, however, is a success story: you might remember that around this time last year, I was presented with a dead-looking escallonia, which I chopped back to a framework - yes, very much as though it were a rose or a wisteria.

This is what I ended up with - right.

Within a few weeks it was leafing up, although one or two of the outlying branches failed to perform: it is not a terribly nice micro-climate, being north-facing, in a valley (so the wind whistles along it at times) and being very much at frost level.

However, it did all right, and the client was very pleased that it recovered.

Here is what it looked like last week: yes, all the new growth made it safely through the winter.

Not bad, eh?

So, if you are faced with a dead-looking shrub at this time of  year, it's often worth cutting it right back hard, and leaving it for a few more weeks, just in case.

This, to me, is one of the wonders of gardening - how sometimes you think a plant has absolutely had it, and yet with a bit of patience, sometimes they come back.

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