Residential Landscape Throughout The Growing SeasonTraditional Landscape, Indianapolis
Eastern redbud, cersis canadensis, native to the many areas east of the Mississippi. This one is the traditional green leaved redbud.
Photo by: Karen Sullivan
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Eastern U.S. native eastern redbud blooms in spring in this Indiana garden.Replace the dearly departed. When plants die, they leave holes in the garden. Instead of rushing out to the nursery to replace them with the same plants, you can take this opportunity to learn a bit more about your garden and its conditions. What’s in the soil? Is there a lot of competition from other plants? Is there not enough sun or rain, or is there too much? Then learn about some native plants that would thrive in those site conditions. If your sunny, dry spot can’t seem to grow anything, consider drought-tolerant natives. If you’re like me and lost a hybrid crabapple, you might consider a native serviceberry (Amelanchier spp.), chokecherry (Prunus virginiana) or redbud (Cercis spp.).How to Find the Right Plants for Your Garden
Architectural specimens. A shrub or clump of shrubs planted in the middle or off to the side could benefit your layered garden. Consider architectural shrubs like redtwig dogwood (Cornus sericea), southern arrowwood (Viburnum dentatum), chokeberry (Aronia spp.) or ninebark (Physocarpus spp.). Depending on the size of your garden, you could also incorporate trees into your layered design. Small trees like ‘Canada Red’ chokecherry (Prunus virginiana ‘Canada Red’), serviceberry (Amelanchier spp.), crabapple (Malus spp.) or redbud (Cercis spp.) would suit this design — or maybe a weeping evergreen. You might even want towering perennials, such as tall tickseed (Coreopsis tripteris), ironweed (Vernonia fasciculata), Joe Pye weed (Eutrochium purpureum) or American senna (Senna hebecarpa) — all of which enliven the garden design with their blooms and structure. The sky really is the limit when it comes to your plant selection — it all depends on your site’s conditions and your preferred garden style.
Eastern Redbud(Cercis canadensis)Native from the Plains east to southern New England and south to FloridaIt’s easy to pick out eastern redbud in early spring. The magenta flowers that line the branches are unlike anything else in the forest understory. It can be used in many ways in the landscape. I’ve seen it used in an allée, with pink blooms lining the path in early spring and heavy shade through the summer. It can also be scattered like exclamation points in a few locations throughout the garden.Eastern redbud prefers full sun to part shade in average to moist soils. As a member of the legume family, it has the ability to fix nitrogen from the air, giving it a boost in infertile or depleted soils. It can also tolerate clay soils. In addition to the species, there are many named cultivars, including red-leafed ‘Forest Pansy’ and yellow-leafed ‘The Rising Sun’ forms and a small weeping cultivar named ‘Covey’, for small gardens. There are some problems with hardiness of cultivated plants in colder climates. You should consider the climate that the plants originated from if this is an issue. The cultivar ‘Northern Strain’ comes from Minnesota and is reported to be more cold hardy than others. The variety texensis is more drought-resistant and suited to warmer climates.See how to grow eastern redbud
Forest pansy redbud. With four-season interest Cercis canadensis, or forest pansy redbud, provides a great focal point in any yard. "This is especially true in the front yard," notes Sims, "where land mass tends to be smaller." Redbuds, like the one in this project by The American Gardener, are rated for full sun but, according to Sims, prefer afternoon shade.USDA zones: 5 to 9Height: 20 feetColor: Blooms pink in early spring; turns purple in fall; deciduousLight requirement: Full sunWater requirement: Regular