As the garden is in close proximity to the house and covered patio, I have selected shade plants that remain fairly small. This also allows me to use more of them as their spread will also be proportionately smaller. Most, in fact, could grow either as shrubs or trees; but in the interest of providing upper and lower levels to the garden, I will be training them in tree-form.
The first to go in was a small tree, Acacia salicina, the Willow Acacia of Australia.
|Acacia salicina at one corner of the East Border. The lemon tree behind is too distant to supply any shade to the garden.|
Foliage of Acacia salicina is distinctly silvery and willow-like. It is a friendly tree, thornless, unlike most Acacias native to the US.
Despite the fact we are celebrating garden foliage with this meme, I can't resist adding this picture of bloom!
A second Crape Myrtle, Lagerstroemia indica "Rhapsody in Pink", is planted halfway down the South Border. It is still quite small, but now growing well after a setback late last summer and a slow start this year. Clearly it has a lot of growing to do!
Moving on into the White and Silver Garden, there is another true native of Arizona deserts: Vaquelinia californica, the lovely Arizona rosewood.
It is a quietly beautiful plant, with white flowers in spring: something I have not yet seen.
Finally, I have begun planting a short allee parallel to the rear of the patio and the Rose Border. I selected Palo Verde "Desert Museum" (Parkinsonia x "Desert Museum") for this area. It is one of the most beautiful trees commonly grown around here, very well adapted, with yellow bloom intermittently for months, and green bark that has a cooling effect in itself.
With temperatures still quite high, it is easy to stay aware of the need for shade. Already some shade is provided by larger perennials to their smaller neighbors. But leaves and branches that one can walk beneath are still some years away!
Linking with Garden Bloggers Foliage Day at My Hesperides Garden for this progress report because, as Christina reminds us, it is always good to stop and think about structure in the garden. And shade is certainly part of structure!