Six on Saturday – 13/11/2021 – Foliage, Groundcover & a Raised Bed

With little help from me, the garden is slowly putting itself to bed for the winter. Almost all deciduous trees have given up their foliage, almost all annuals have stopped blooming or died (many were hastened to their end my my secateurs, I admit), and just a few perennials have the odd bloom bursting open. That said, our thus far mild November has meant there’s still colour to be found, such as five of these six things in my garden this weekend. To see six things in garden the world over, check out The Propagator‘s site.

Paperbark Maple – Acer griseum – one of the smaller maples, it leafs out very late in the spring and, as a reward for our pateience, it holds onto its leaves very late into the fall. They’re a lovely red this time of year (as in the top, feature photo), but the allure of this tree to many is its exfoliating cinnamon coloured bark.
Deer ate the outer half of my Fothergilla last winter – no flowers for me this past spring, and the shrub remained stunted all year. I’m hoping it will survive this winter intact, if for no reason other than its beautiful orange-yellow leaves that, again, remain on the shrub well into fall.

And now for a pair of ground covers. They’re both semi-evergreen in my garden, they both spread quite readily in full sun and they’re both covered in a profusion of flowers for a period in mid to late spring, followed by sporadic flowering until they get covered by snow.

And finally, a new raised bed. This was built using scraps of lumber we’ve had hanging about the yard for a while; I wanted it placed at the end of the back porch, facing south, under a metal trellis. I’ll plant peas in this bed in early spring, along with spinach or lettuce. Perhaps a few Nasturtiums to hang over the edges. Have a great weekend everyone!


  1. Paperbark maple looks so pretty in pictures from other regions. Dang, it is nothing like that here. I know that several maples would rather be somewhere else, but most at least survive here. This one almost always looks very shabby, and is so reliably shabby that I would never plant one. However, there is one here that was planted decades ago. I almost cut it down, not because it was shabby, but because it was disfigured by other overwhelming vegetation. Instead, I cut it back harshly. Now, it looks quite happy and healthy! That certainly got may attention.

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    1. Well that’s a story with s happy ending! My little tree is more like a large shrub – several main branches died right back when it was young so it has no central leader and it does look somewhat shabby at times. I’m hoping it will grow into itself, and in the meantime I do enjoy its bark and autumn colour.

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  2. This acer griseum doesn’t look old, but it already has a very nice peeled bark.
    My fothergilla is at the same stage and if I can reassure you I haven’t had a lot of flowers this year either. The leaves and the fall colors are really beautiful, you are right !

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  3. I’d never heard of the paperbark maple. It’s quite beautiful; anything cinnamon colored appeals to me, and that birch-like bark is wonderful. I had to laugh — when I went to our USDA map to see what its range might be, it turned out to be the first plant that wasn’t shown anywhere on the map, either as native or introduced. I ought to let them know there’s one in your yard that could be added to the map!

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    1. It really is beautiful, and all year. The bark really stands out after a snowfall. You don’t see it too often around here – perhaps because it’s a slow grower. And expensive – I got mine 5 or 6 years ago at an end of season garden center auction. It looked pretty bad then, due to a previous winter’s die-back I assume, so was only around $15.


  4. Nice raised bed, sounds like a great location for a kitchen garden. I haven’t seen a Paperbark Maple in years, lovely to see one again. I tried Fothergillia further north and never had much luck with it, hope you get some flowers next year.

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  5. Shame about the deer snacking on your plants. The colours in your garden are still lovely, as you say. We have a paperbark tree here, but it’s nothing like your maple. It has sheets of grey bark which are very paper like.

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      1. There’s also another one called Melaleuca linariifolia. It has a papery bark as well, and is in flower just now, a mass of white flowers. It’s also called Snow in Summer.

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