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Regional Picks: Focal-Point Plants – Southeast

Fine Gardening - Issue 134

 1. ‘Morgan’ Oriental Arborvitae

Name: Platycladus orientalis ‘Morgan’

USDA hardiness zones: 6 to 9

Size: 3 to 4 feet tall and 18 inches wide (matures in 10 years)

Conditions: Full sun; average soil

This woody chameleon is known for its ability to transform its foliage color. As the thermometer drops, ‘Morgan’ changes from green to purple to coppery orange. The foliage remains green within the plant, creating a striking contrast. To get the most dramatic winter color, plant it in a sunny, exposed site. ‘Morgan’ is a great replacement for dwarf Alberta spruce (Picea glauca ‘Conica’, Zones 2–6), which suffers in heat and humidity. Like most arborvitae, however, deer will nibble on it.


2. ‘Winter Flame’ Bloodtwig Dogwood

Name: Cornus sanguinea ‘Winter Flame’

Zones: 4 to 7

Size: 6 to 8 feet tall and wide

Conditions: Full sun to partial shade; average soil

‘Winter Flame’ struts its stuff during the cold months, when its stems develop a fiery orange-yellow color at their…

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