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Abies Koreana — 48 Comments

  1. The cones of the Abies koreana are indeed striking. Such a fabulous colour. I love the weeping habit of the Cedrus. Neither of these trees are common sights here. Conifers, in general, are not a typical planting in our part of the world, so it’s terrific seeing them in your photos.

    Your garden is just stunning. That last shot shows just how fantastic the planting is in your borders and garden beds. The Asiatic Lilies are marvellous. That is a plant that will grow here … must get some!

  2. Good morning Alistair… your post is wonderful today… so many things of interest to me! Regarding borrowed views… I have donated a few trees to the neighbors that I didn’t have room for in the garden and yet my view of them is much better than theirs!

    Our orienpets are set to open any time soon and some are seven feet tall this year… can’t wait!

    I enjoyed the conifers in your post… Siberlocke is definitely a favorite for me. My original plant was purchased close to 25 years ago… it never grew and I tried moving it to different sites to no avail. This spring I thought I’d try one last move and it has started taking off and growing… unreal. The second Silberlocke I have, was purchased as a two foot tree and it has barely grown in the three years I’ve had it… interesting behavior.

    Your ‘mugo’ pine is most likely not a mugo, but rather a Pinus strobus ‘nana’ or dwarf white pine… I couldn’t comment on the particular cultivar. These can get sizable here over time although I’m sure a number of more diminutive cultivars are probably available.

    The taxus is lovely, but I’ve read they aren’t hardy here so haven’t tried one… I’m not certain whether we could grow the beautiful cedar… I agree it is a beautiful plant!

    It is now garden walk season here and we are headed about 75 miles north for one best most most years… we will see seven gardens and hope to head out early as we are in for a very hot and humid weekend… I don’t handle the sun as well as I used to I’m afraid.

    I was moving hoses in the middle of the night when I discovered what has been digging in our gardens lately… young raccoons I’m afraid and I got rather close in the dark which I realized when I turned on the flashlight.

    Have a great week and I’ve really enjoyed this post and as you know do appreciate the close-ups, but especially the garden views… your gardens are sensational this year! Larry

    • Hello Larry, The Abies seems particularly happy in this part of the world. Thanks for the suggestion regarding the dwarf pine. Hope the Racoons don’t cause too much damage. Enjoy your garden walks and take it easy in the sun.

  3. Alistair, if I had room for one more tree at this point, I would seek one of those out. it is positively stunning and I can only imagine what the cones are like in real life!

    We actually planted a tree grove a few years ago, and I identify with everything you said about trees in the garden, since Steve and I feel the same way. A rare tree sprouted in our garden two years ago (this sprout is now 10 feet tall LOL) and we are working with arborists to relocate it to a more appropriate place on our property, which is going to require a landscaper at this point.

    As for your mugo, I definitely think it’s a mugo — based on what little one can tell from a photograph. My Dad raised mugos and other shrubs in his nursery for years and years – mugos were his favorite – and I used to have one in my former yard. When we planted our gardens on this property, we bought a shrub labeled a mugo, although I had my doubts just looking at it, and it clearly was not, but it is a dwarf blue spruce (I think) with a habitus similar to mugo, although definitely not the same color nor as petite.

    Lovely gardens as usual, and I do love the lilies!

  4. Alistair – When I first read this post I couldn’t understand how the blue-coned Korean fir could come second to the cedrus. Then I googled cedrus out of curiosity and saw some mature trees – now I can understand why. I would describe them as shaggy (in a nice way) and I guess each has its own unique personality. It will be interesting to watch yours as it grows up.

  5. Very pretty garden – love the long shot. I love conifers, but it’s a bit hot here for most of them. But I do agree trees give so much back, and should be included in the garden. Like that you have a great view of your neighbor’s tree! Good planting!

  6. Your garden looks so lush and colorful, I don’t think I would ever post pictures of mine…. I love the conifers you showed, especially the one with the blue cones and in your neighbors’ garden, they are really special.

  7. I am just taking notice of conifers and ericas as a ‘go with the weather’ style of gardening and I love the 2 small conifers I bought earlier this year but having such a large garden I would love some of the faster growing and larger specimens you have here but the only shop in town that sells them only has small dwarf varieties, I completely agree with you to plant a tree but also when living so close to neighbours you must keep in mind the shade a large tree could be putting them in,
    love your lilies mine are still in bud, years ago my first lilies were free from J Parker when I had ordered other plants, last autumn when I ordered more lilies I got tulips free which I really enjoyed this spring, Frances

  8. oophs also meant to say I love seeing the larger view of gardens, I actually leave a blog or website that shows just close ups especially if it’s all macro, like looking at a catalogue not a garden, just my quirks, Frances

  9. Amazing cones in the first photo. I agree with your mention of Donna of GWGT, those lilies macro shots are so stunning making your post and your garden more amazing. Of course that’s also because the photos are nice! thanks.

  10. Simply beuatiful examples and a great review of coniferous evergreens suitable for the garden, even the shadier parts. Very good point about planting west facing to avoid shade casting. Love your thick, ascending border Alistair – such a good eye for planting and like to see your grasses with plenty of room

  11. nice post. have you ever seen a Chamaecyparis nootkatensis pendula-Alaskan Weeping Cedar? I’ve always liked the blue cones on Abies. i lived in Colorado for 3 years andviewed many unique conifers. your tour was great. if the dwarf pine has soft limber needles it is probably a white pine.

  12. Hi Alistair – As always, I absorbed every word of this post.

    I do find macro type photos enchanting but especially as a new gardener, I find photos of a plant in its actual setting (i.e. with other plants in the garden) very useful as I get a far better perspective of how it would look once planted). For example the photo of your bed above – I can see how I SHOULD be planting. Of course you are not here to educate me, but it is why I am always drawn to your blog – because it entertains and educates me. Thank you!

  13. Wow, that last photo is superb, well done Alistair! Conifers are underrated (and maligned because of Leyladii) but alot of them are architectural and make superb backbone, including Abies 🙂

  14. I envy you all your trees. While I have a lot of space, I don’t have much land to plant on and as such I am limited to only 5 trees that should not grow wide.

    The blue cones against the green leaves and your lilies are so vibrant. You really should post more wide angle shots. Your backyard looks fantastic, Alistair, and it’s not something easily imagined from the close-up shots.

  15. I was at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Hamilton on the weekend when I came upon a small Abies Koreana Silberlocke. I stopped dead in my tracks to admire its blue grey cones. I don’t know all that much about evergreens, but so love them that I am determined to learn more and squeeze a few into my garden. The lilies in your garden are pretty. I enjoy seeing the shots of the full beds. It helps to give a better sense of your garden. I really like the brick edging on one of the two borders you showed in this post. How do you manage to keep the grass from sneaking up through the cracks?

  16. Beautiful conifer choices you’ve made Alistair for your garden. My Taxus baccata Fastiagata aurea was newly planted when the first of those dreadful winters killed it and I’ve never replaced it yet. Most of my conifers are the very very dwarf ones in my scree beds at the front of the house. As for alstromerias………… I used to try and grow them but I couldn’t get the newer ones through the winter with my soil which is such shame as they are so pretty. I’ll be sure to pass your tips on feeding as I meet lots of alstromeria growers.

  17. Hi Alistair, I’m with Carolyn, I don’t tend to favour conifers in the garden because of the dry shade they create and the tendency to remove the moisture for what seems like miles around, but you make a good case! And I couldn’t agree more about the value of having trees in a garden, however small, and about “borrowing” from neghbours. Interesting post.

    • Janet, conifers do same to be more favoured in Scotland, probably because we get so much rain. Fortunately, not quite so much in the east coast where we are. However June was the coldest recorded for 10 years in Aberdeen, so much for the global warming, oh of course its now climate change.

  18. Alistair,
    I have a Korean Fir that has 15 cones on it, but they are all a light silverish lavender color. Do I need to amend the soil in order to get the dark blue color?

    • Rob, Koreana is so well known for their blue cones. The cones are at their most blue whilst young and do fade to a silvery grey as they age. Our soil is quite acidic.

  19. Hi Alaistair
    I’m thinking of transplanting my abies koreana and moving it down to my allotment. Would this be a good time of the year to do so? Its about four and a half feet tall at present Its been in the ground for 7 or eight years

  20. Gorgeous conifers! I have a wish list of plants on my website, and I wondered if you would mind if I use your photo of the Cedrus Deodara Aurea with a credit and link back to your website? It is one of the best examples I have seen. Thanks!

  21. Hi,

    I have the Abies Koreana Fir. Indeed the blue cones look lovely. I am always disappointed that mine have white gluey stuff coming out spoiling the look. Also this year the needles on some branches have turned yellow mid way down and dropping off..

    Maybe too much watering.

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