EVERGREEN TREE – Japanese Black Pine (Pinus thunbergii)
In it’s natural form, this pine can grow upwards of 20′ or more when inland. It thrives in our coastal climate with an irregular but interesting form. It makes a spectacular focal point when planted on a berm and cantilevered over some boulders, especially when it’s up lit with landscape lighting.
DECIDUOUS TREE – Magnolia Tree (Magnolia x)
Sure, Japanese maples rule the roost here in the PNW, with their tranquil form and endless varieties to choose from. But, nothing is more exciting after a long, wet winter than seeing the giant saucer bloom of a deciduous magnolia. Flowers appear before the leaves, delivering a dramatic show for soggy eyes.
EVERGREEN SHRUB – Rainbow Drooping Fetterbrush (Leucothoe fontanesiana ‘Rainbow’)
This broadleaf evergreen shrub is sure to brighten any dark corner of your yard with it’s mottled leaves and casual form. It blooms droopy white clusters of flowers in the spring. This is a staple in shady gardens.
DECIDUOS SHRUB – Hydrangea (ANY variety!)
You just can’t go wrong with hydrangeas, unless there is a herd of deer in your yard. This bountiful, beautiful bloomer arrives in summer and hangs on into the fall, then makes an excellent dried flower. Typically they do best in part shade but the species ‘paniculata’ can take full sun, no problem.
PERENNIAL – Hummingbird Mint (Agastache)
Oh, this one is hard! There are so many outstanding perennials to choose from. But my favorite to have next to a sunny, dry porch is hummingbird mint. As you may have guessed, it attracts hummingbirds, bees and butterflies with its spikes of tubular flower and anise scented foliage. This perennial is a long bloomer, nearly all summer and into the fall. It comes in all of the colors of the rainbow, so pick your favorite!