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Avoid 'Open Season' On Your Full Sun Plantings

By Glenn Jacobsen (538 words)
Posted in Bergen County Landscape Design Ideas

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by Emil Rostello, Jr., Landscape Design/Sales

As a landscape designer, there are so many beautiful plants I can use to ply my craft. In most areas I do just that, with one exception—deer country! I liken it to the painter being limited in the colors they can use, or the builder being restricted to building only one story buildings. We landscape designers must come to terms with the unavoidable truth that deer devour most flowering plants, especially the cultivated ones. So, as any artist would, I’ve adapted and turned a negative into a positive, and along the way developed a style and design process by which I can create beautiful, dynamic landscapes with a relatively limited plant palette. Here are a few things that I do to make the most of this tough situation:

  • First and foremost, landscaping in deer country requires a different mindset; it requires the designer to think in bold strokes. With the limited plant palette you need to think in larger quantities of the same plant. Be bold and plant 12 of one variety instead of four groups of three. You’ll be pleasantly surprised with the result.
  • Welcome ornamental grasses with open arms. They lend themselves to large drifts and the deer don’t touch them. Interplant them with early spring, deer resistant bulbs, like daffodils, to give you a big pop of color whilst they emerge in the spring.
  • Make the hardscape elements in your garden extra special. Garden ornaments, water features, pergolas, interesting paving and patio areas play a larger role in the garden now.

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                                                          Miscanthus Adagio

Having a beautifully appointed garden, planted with bold, dramatic drifts of deer resistant plants will create a clean-lined, refined, and stunning landscape which will be the talk of the neighborhood, as they all struggle trying to find ways to keep the deer from eating their roses.

Here are some tried and true full sun, deer resistant plants:

Evergreen Shrubs: Buxus sp. Boxwoods-many different cultivars, Chaemacyparis sp. Cypress

Deciduous Shrubs Berberis thunbergii Japanese Barberry, Buddleia davidii, Butterflybush-perennial like, Caryopteris x clandonensis  Bluebeard-may get nibbled, Hypericum sp.  St. Johnswort, Spirea japonica  Japanese Meadowsweet-may get nibbled

Perennials Grasses: Miscanthus sp.  Maiden Grass, Pennisetum sp.  Fountain Grass, alamagrostis sp.  Reed Grass ***most all ornamental grasses are deer resistant

Perennials: Achillea sp.  Yarrow, Aconitum sp.  Monkshood, Agastache hybrids  Hyssop,Artemisia sp.  Perennial Dusty Miller, Asclepias sp.  Milkweed, Aurinia saxitalis  Basket-of-Gold, Baptisia australis  False Indigo, Belamcanda chinensis  Blackberry Lily, Cerastium tomentosum  Snow-in-Summer, Iberis sempervirens  Candytuft, Iris siberica  Siberian Iris, Kniphofia uvaria  Torch Lily, Lavandula sp.  Lavender, Nepeta sp.  Catmint, Physostegia virginiana  Obedient Plant, Paeonia sp.  Garden Peony, Perovskia atriplicifolia  Russian Sage, Persicaria sp. Knotweed, Stachys sp.  Lamb’s Ear

Groundcovers Hypericum calycinum  St. Johnswort{#/pub/images/SpireaMagicCarpet.jpg}

Spirea japonica

About the Blogger: His exceptional love of the outdoors, art and gardening made the landscape industry the perfect career fit for Emil Rostello, Jr. His exceptional knowledge of plant material allows him to utilize a mixed palate of evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs, along with herbaceous perennials, to create dynamic, colorful landscapes with plenty of year round interest. When he is not designing landscapes, you can find him fishing or on some other adventure with his twin boys, Benjamin and Leonardo.

Comments (1)

Paulette katz

Emil...
My son jay is designing pools.i thought it would b s good match for u.
Hoping all is well. We r in Monroe now.
Brought our hydrangeas. Left my roses. :-(
Paulette katz

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