Sunday, August 23, 2009

Serendipitous Silver

Pinus parviflora 'Hagoromo' is a slow-growing dwarf Japanese white pine with a very interesting shape and twisted needles that give you glimpses of the silver beneath. This is the first plant I purchased for my garden that could be considered a collector's plant, and it definitely is the plant in my garden with the most character. I first planted it with Juniperus horizontalis 'Motherlode' thinking the yellow conifer would bring attention to and accentuate the unique coloring of the Hagoromo, but the impact wasn't quite what I had hoped. I added a Sedum ‘Purple Emperor’. Perhaps the dark sedum would bring out the brightness of the silver highlights, but no luck. One day I noticed a piece of Artemisia stelleriana 'Silver Brocade' had escaped from another bed and was growing right under the pine and instantly realized I had my ideal companion. For the first time the silver glimpses from under the twisted needles really 'popped'. I'm not sure the photos do the effect justice, but both Jak and I agree the Artemisia really makes the scene work. Another unplanned moment of happiness in the garden!

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