I have clay. Ornamental elderberries like Black Lace® and Laced Up® are so beautiful and exotic looking that it comes as a surprise to many people that they are also extremely tough. All Rights Reserved. Fortunately, Dr. Tom Ranney from NCSU developed the Double Take™ series, which has the same super saturated flower colors but in big, doubled versions and without thorns. If you’re looking for something smaller, the dwarf Lil’ Kim® series is just the ticket. Do remember that shrubs grown on clay have great stability, the weight of the soil keeps the roots firm and the plants rarely suffer from wind-rock. Image: RHS/John Trenholm We selected the Happy Face series for extra-large, very bright blooms. In addition to their ability to withstand challenging conditions, smooth hydrangeas like the Incrediball ® series and Invincibelle ® series bring all-new colors to this landscape standard. But in the more temperate regions of the country, boxwood are considered drought tolerant once established in the garden. Ribes sanguineum. For many homeowners who love working on their garden, clay soil isn’t typically met with much enthusiasm. Come fall, the foliage really comes alive, appearing lit from within, which makes them the perfect alternative to burning bush in places where it has become invasive. Want to grow edibles? Find locations near you that offer Proven Winners products. 13 years ago. While Kodiak® diervillas may not be the most flashy shrubs you’ll ever plant, you will definitely appreciate how hard-working they are – and how much work they save you. Trees that will grow in clay soil. Low Scape® Hedger aronia has a taller but narrow habit, so it makes the perfect low hedge for landscaping or screening off air conditioners and the like. But the simple fact is that clay soil gets its bad rap because it’s hard on people - from a plant’s point of view, clay soil is usually not problematic at all. Butterfly bush, for example, is not usually a great choice for planting in clay soil because it cannot stand up to cold, wet conditions. Or how about rose of Sharon (aka Althea), a long-time garden favorite with its huge, saucer-like flowers. Many varieties have the liability of setting a lot of seed that spread all over the place and makes it kind of a maintenance nightmare, but our low to no seed varieties, the Chiffon® series, the Satin® series, and the Sugar Tip® series eliminate this problem, adding outstanding, pure colors and graceful habits to boot. It can grow in nearly any soil and needs no pruning to grow into a landscape-worthy accent or hedge. They do best in well-drained, fertile soil. These are followed by shining purple fruits loved by pheasants, hence the common name: “Pheasant Berry”. Other good shrubs to grow on clay soils: Abelia, Chaenomeles, Corylus, Cytisus, Escallonia, Garrya, Genista, Hamamelis, Lonicera, Potentilla, Sambucus, Skimmia, Spiraea, Syringa Planting on clay can be difficult It is … Dogwood Shrubs – Dogwood shrubs are extremely versatile plants that can handle clay soils with ease and grow in sun and part shade. Many old-fashioned shrub roses grow well on clay soil, so ‘Blanche Double de Coubert’ is a representative of them all, as well as being one of the finest old roses in its own right. Hibiscus syriacus ‘Hamabo is one of the best. There's some beautiful flowering trees that cope admirably in clay soil, as well as trees with beautiful bark or evergreen foliage. Hop bush (Dodonaea viscosa), also known as Florida hop bush, is an evergreen that grows quickly in clay soil at a rate of 24 to 36 inches per growing season. Tough hawthorns are deciduous trees or shrubs, and a good choice for clay soils. For larger spaces choose one of the cultivars of Magnolia soulangeana, however this grows best in neutral to acid clay. Many people are surprised to find boxwood shrubs on a drought tolerant list of plants. Join me on my next 4 week online Shrubs course here at Learning with experts, Understanding your Soil: Acid and Alkaline Soils. Finally, come autumn, the whole plant blazes with brilliant orange, red, and yellow color. Special interests include hardy shrubs, trees, herbaceous perennials, flower bulbs, wildlife and garden design; he has authored books on all of these subjects. Besides the compass plant, the shorter Silphium integrifolium (Rosinweed) also makes a good choice for clay soil. The best shrubs for clay soil are those that are tolerant of its texture and its ability to hold water and then dry out. They are also highly resistant to diseases that can plague conventional lilacs, too. I do encourage gardeners to think of shrub roses just as they would any flowering shrub and to use them accordingly. For late summer flowers the hardy hibiscus are reliable, even if they are late to break into leaf at the beginning of the season. Happy Face® potentillas are about as close as you can get to a shrub that blooms non-stop. The flower clusters hang from the branches from early summer through to autumn, claret red bracts interspersed with small white flowers. All of these do well in sun as well as shade and provide important structure on the heaviest of soils. They do so with good-natured aplomb and the ability to take most anything nature throws at them, including tough soils. Whether you live in the frigid North or the steamy South, you can grow these easy-care, practically fool-proof hydrangeas. Clay Tolerant Plants Print this page. Andy has over thirty years experience as a practical horticulturist and consultant. Angus’s Top Ten Australian Plants For Clay Soils Angus’s Top Ten Australian Plants For Clay Soils 1 Melaleuca linariifolia ‘Claret Tops’ Because of its fine grey … There are flowering perennials, shrubs, climbers, and trees that all enjoy or tolerate hard clay at their roots. Started from scratch fifteen years ago, the garden is naturalistic in style, with an extensive wildflower meadow and informal planting. If you are asking yourself, “Do I have heavy clay soils?” Try this test. Perennial Plants for Shady Clay. I always emphasise that if you say “clay” with a smile on your face it sounds so much nicer. Dig a … The emphasis is on foliage to provide colour and texture.WW... Read more. In fact, clay soils offer plants two major advantages over other soil types: they hold water well, minimizing drought stress, and are abundant in nutrients essential for plant growth. Many shrubs grow well on clay soils, especially the popular deciduous flowering shrubs: deutzia, philadelphus, weigela, forsythia and ribes for example. Evergreens can sometimes be tricky to grow. To ensure that the effort you spend digging pays landscape dividends, look for these flowering shrubs and evergreens that happily grow and bloom in clay soils: (https://www.provenwinners.com/retailers/locate) Full sun/partial shade I have both moist and dry conditions. Try ‘Beauclerk’ (for its white flowers with a purple tinge) or the similar ‘Belle Etiole’ for its lemon fragrance. Choose from reblooming types like Bloomerang ® or Scent and Sensibility ™ or double-flowered cultivars like Scentara ™. Take your pick of four glorious shades: Double Take Scarlet™, Double Take Orange™, Double Take Pink™, and Double Take Peach™. Just pick your favorite colors, plant, and enjoy – you won’t have to worry about deer or rabbits spoiling the show. Such soils … With all year round interest a combination of this type makes a good screen or backdrop. However, when I see how well so many plants look growing on clay my attitude changes. Here’s a list of 10 Good Veggies to Grow in Clay Soil. For the most part, these can be true — but only if the clay […] These elderberries aren’t finicky about their soil, but they prefer cooler climates. In addition to their ability to withstand challenging conditions, smooth hydrangeas like the Incrediball® series and Invincibelle® series bring all-new colors to this landscape standard. The arborvitae class of plants is made up of a few different varieties of tall, pyramid-shaped trees or shrubs with needles and cones, any of which will grow tall and strong in clay. Early autumn is therefore the best time to plant, to give the shrub longer to establish. A regular contributor to magazines, newspapers and BBC Radio, Andy lectures widely at home and abroad. Growing wild over much of the eastern United States and Canada, diervilla is a quiet, refined shrub that does a lot in the landscape but asks very little from you. Hibiscus syriacus ‘Hamabo is one of the best. I do add compost every year to the beds and plant with good soil every time. Plants like clay a lot more than gardeners do. When it comes to evergreens those hardy favourites come to the fore: choisya, aucuba and Viburnum tinus. The general impression is that clay can be quite difficult to work with and that only a few plants can successfully grow in it. The general impression is that clay can be quite difficult to work with and that only a few plants can successfully grow in it. My whole yard is clay and hard to work with. Clay soil is one of the more difficult soils to have in a garden bed. For flowering shrubs that like clay, a great place to start is with native smooth hydrangea, also called Annabelle hydrangea. Shrubs that can tolerate clay soil are one solution to growing plants in heavy, less than perfect soil. Rosa ‘Bonica’ for example has healthy green foliage, few thorns and will bloom repeatedly though summer and into autumn with little attention from you. Andy McIndoe is our Chief Blogger, and teaches five courses on the site. When shrubs are established little further maintenance or cultivation is needed. Hedges For Clay Soil – So often you hear gardeners lamenting about wanting to grow x, y and z plants in their gardens only to qualify it with ‘but we are on clay’, as if it is some kind of soil borne deficiency or shortcoming. That if you ’ re looking for something smaller, the garden is naturalistic in style, with extensive. Is clay and hard to beat for easy-care summer color however, when i see well... As you can McIndoe is our Chief Blogger, and deep mahogany-red stems extremely plants... Bloomerang ® or Scent and Sensibility ™ or double-flowered cultivars like Scentara ™ pink... 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