Architectural Plants refers to plants with shape and form. This comes naturally to some plants and some need it thrust upon them and that’s where we come in.
Sequoidendron giganteum (Giant redwood) has a naturally architectural form and we love them. They require little to no work to keep their statuesque form – clear their lower branches when they’re 15 years or older and that’s it. We all know redwoods for their spongy red bark and massive scale but the foliage is also incredibly tactile. The very Mediterranean Pinus pinea holds its shape in a similar way.
We like adding drama to a garden with Trachycarpus wagnerianus . Use the common bread knife to cut the hairy bark away, layer by layer, and reveal the shiny, coppery striped bark beneath. It’s a labour of love but well worth the effort. For the more maverick gardener we recommend burning the stem with a blow torch and rubbing with a wire brush to remove all of the fibrous growth left. Keep the hose handy and prepare for fireworks, it’s horticulture at its wildest.
We are especially good at transforming the common shrub into something particularly beautiful. Remove the lower foliage with secateurs to uncover the hidden structure below. With shears shape the top and level off the bottom. If well-proportioned it should look like an open parachute. Getting the right proportions is essential.
To find out more on the subject visit our website and / or our nursery. We also offer tours and courses or if you want to leave it to the experts we can come and do any of the above for you as part of our Creative Maintenance Service.