While I was completing all the measurements required by the city, I discovered that the root flare is 30 inches from my neighbor's foundation (and getting closer every year).
It also ate his hose bib. I feel bad now for not removing it earlier. It has created fencing challenges and I couldn't be happier to see it go. With the tree gone we can safely build our platform deck as far over as we want without worrying about doing root damage.
While I'm at it, I'm going to tear out the boxwood located in the corner of the yard. I never removed it before because I figured nothing else would be able to get up to size with competition from a mature tree.
And while I'm dismantling the fence and digging up all of the plants in this area, I'm considering removing the pieris too. I'm conflicted about this one, because it's evergreen and established and it requires no water BUT I just don't love it. And as long as I'm having someone grind out stumps, I might as well have them grind that one too. It also has a filbert tree sprouting right next to it that we can't seem to eradicate.
All of this means that I have a huge new area where I can plant the shrubs and trees I've always wanted to plant. On the short list for a replacement tree is Magnoila macrophylla var. Ashei. I love the huge leaves and I covet Clifford, Loree's Magnolia macrophylla. My tentative plan is something like this:
|Click to embiggen|
I came home from Xera with an olive tree (Olea europaea 'Frantoio') for the corner. Greg and Paul said it gets up to size quickly, requires little water, and has fantastic winter interest.
I had been considering Arbutus unedo but Paul warned me that they are very messy. Also on the list currently:
- Leptospermum lanigerum (it was at Xera when I was buying the olive tree and the small leaves looked fantastic next to the olive)
- Ceanothus x 'Concha'
- Maybe another manzanita?
I have two existing Mahonia ('Underway' and 'Winter Sun') that will get moved a bit. I also have a golden ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius 'Nugget') that I'd like to keep in the area.
If you had a blank slate, what shrubs would you plant? Would you keep the pieris? I'm on a standard city lot, so my room for large shrubs is limited and I want to plant ones that I'll be completely in love with. Any opinions are welcome!