Thursday, November 09, 2006

Burning Bush (Euonymus alatus)

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Burning Bush
Euonymus alatus
(yoo-ON-ih-mus) (a-LAY-tus)

This isn't actually a photograph but a botanical scan. I made it on my all-in-one HP 1610. This is from last fall and it kind of confirmed my feeling that the colors weren't as nice this year. The shrub is in my yard and it is nowhere near this color this fall. I don't recommend this plant as it is considered invasive. It seeds all over the woods here in Connecticut. A couple of large nurseries don't even sell it anymore since it is considered invasive. It can be nice enough in the garden. It does get fairly large if the conditions are right. If you have to use it the Compact form is better for the garden. The best fall color is in full sun. The winged bark can be interesting in the winter. I have taken to hard pruning on the plants that I manage. Reducing it in half is what I strive for and sometimes even a little more. This is especially true on some of the specimens that are in foundation plantings and around walks and borders. A couple of the cultivars I have been growing are Euonymus alatus 'Rudy Haag' a very interesting dwarf form and the rare 'Monstrosus' which has large wings on the stems. The Spindle trees are a different species but are interesting plants and are not too common.

I didn't have any time to scan any foliage this fall. I noticed the Bradford Pears are still hanging in there so maybe I will try and get a branch from there. Scanning is fun because you never know what you are going to get. One trick I have learned is not to press the foliage down with the top. I usually use a piece of white paper placed on the top. That gives it some nice shadows.

We got 2.5 inches (6+ cm., I think) of rain here yesterday. I am sure it did some damage as it was really raining hard for a long time. I guess it will test some of the drainage we recently installed.

(Syn.: Cork Bush, Winged Euonymus, Winged Spindletree, Celastrus alatus)

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