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TREES & plants

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  • Italian Clematis (Clematis viticella)

    Also known as: Italian clematis

    Italian clematis is a species of clematis with purple or violet flowers that are shaped like hanging bells.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Jack pine (Pinus banksiana)

    Also known as: jack pine

    Jack pine is very hardy and well suited to northern climates. It can be used in windbreaks, although it is susceptible to ice storm damage and may be difficult to find in nurseries.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet), 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Jackman's clematis and the Jackman group of hybrids (Clematis x jackmanii)

    Also known as: Jackman's clematis

    Jackman's clematis is a very old and well known clematis with large, dark purple flowers. It is the picture that comes to mind when the word clematis is spoken. There are a number of hybrids derived from this species and they are known as the Jackman group or the Jackman hybrids. These hybrids generally have large flowers.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese barberry (Berberis thunbergii)

    Also known as: Japanese barberry, barberry

    A common sight in yards and gardens throughout eastern North America, this Asian shrub is invasive and should not be planted. Growing three to six feet tall, it is most easily identified by its small, rounded leaves, spiny stems, and red berries that develop in summer. Birds and rodents eat the fruits and distribute the seeds widely. Its branches form roots when in contact with the soil.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese black pine (Pinus thunbergii)

    Also known as: Japanese black pine

    Japanese black pine has a striking, irregular form accented by its dark, lustrous green needles. This Asian native is very tolerant of salt spray and soil salt, but It may be difficult to find in nurseries.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet), 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese cornel (Cornus officinalis)

    Also known as: Japanese cornel, Japanese cornelian-cherry, Asian dogwood

    Japanese cornel is very similar to the popular cornelian-cherry dogwood (Cornus mas). It has the same bright yellow flowers in early spring, followed by oblong cherry-red fruits. Flowering occurs slightly earlier on this species and the form is more open. It can be grown as a large shrub or small tree.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese flowering cherry (Prunus serrulata)

    Also known as: Japanese flowering cherry

    Japanese flowering cherry is an Asian species known more for its cultivars. The actual species is seldom sold. The cultivars produce showy flowers in spring and some good leaf color in autumn.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese flowering crabapple (Malus floribunda)

    Also known as: Japanese flowering crabapple

    A small ornamental tree known for its showy, bright pink buds that open to fragrant white flowers. Japanese flowering crabapple has an irregular, spreading branch habit as it ages, showy, persistent yellow-red fruits, and good disease resistance. Use as a specimen tree, in small groups, or a mixed border.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese flowering quince (Chaenomeles japonica)

    Also known as: Japanese flowering quince, flowering quince

    Japanese flowering quince is a low-growing, spring-flowering shrub with dark green shiny leaves. Growth habit changes with cultivars often reaching 3 to 4 feet high. Bright orange-scarlet flowers appear after the leaves emerge. Most stems have thorns, so avoid planting near sidewalk and heavy traffic areas.

    Size Range: 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa macra)

    Also known as: Japanese forest grass, hakone grass, hakonechloa grass

    Japanese forest grass is a low-growing grass that can be planted close together to form a ground cover. There are some interesting cultivars that provide color in the landscape.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium plant (12-24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese garden juniper (Juniperus procumbens)

    Also known as: Japanese garden juniper

    Japanese garden juniper is a low-growing, ground-hugging evergreen reaching 6 to 12 inches high and eventually spreading 4 to 6 feet wide. Excellent as a ground cover, used to stabilize slopes or cascading over low walls. The blue-green foliage turns a slight purple in the winter.

    Size Range: 
    • Small plant (6-12 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese honeysuckle (Illegal to sell in Illinois) (Lonicera japonica)

    Also known as: Japanese honeysuckle

    Japanese honeysuckle is an attractive plant, but under the Illinois Exotic Weed Act, it cannot be sold in Illinois. It is also considered invasive in many areas.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches), 
    • Low-growing plant (under 6 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily), 
    • Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese hydrangea vine (Schizophragma hydrangeoides)

    Also known as: Japanese hydrangea vine

    Japanese hydrangea vine is an excellent vine for wood or stone fences, walls, and arbors. It attaches to hard surfaces by root-like holdfasts. Cinnamon-brown bark and large, white lace cap flowers in late June add to the beauty of this climbing vine.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily), 
    • Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese kerria (Kerria japonica)

    Also known as: Japanese Kerria

    Japanese kerria is a lovely 4 to 6 feet high shrub with upright to finely textured arching stems. Plants are especially attractive when abundant bright yellow flowers open in the spring. The bright green, arched stems add winter interest in a naturalized garden and makes an excellent choice for perennial shade borders. In recent years a stem blight disease has made this plant difficult to find in nurseries.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily), 
    • Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi)

    Also known as: Japanese larch

    Japanese larch is a sun-loving, deciduous conifer native to Japan. The 70-foot-high pyramidal tree has slender, pendulous branches, and clusters of bright green needles that turn a golden yellow in the fall before dropping.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese magnolia (Magnolia kobus)

    Also known as: Japanese magnolia, kobus magnolia, kobushi magnolia

    Japanese magnolia or Kobus magnolia is a medium-sized tree native to the forests of Japan. The early spring, goblet-shaped, slightly fragrant, white flowers are tinged with pink. In late fall clustered seed pods split open to reveal red seeds. Seeds are attractive to birds.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily), 
    • Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese maple (Acer palmatum)

    Also known as: Japanese maple

    Varying in size from large shrub to small tree, Japanese maple is a species with many variations. Many cultivars are available with different characteristics such as finely dissected leaves and weeping branches. Not all cultivars are fully hardy in zone 5 and may need protection in winter.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese scholar tree (Sophora japonica)

    Also known as: Japanese pagoda tree, scholar-tree, scholar tree, Chinese scholar tree

    Japanese scholar tree is an interesting member of the pea family. In summer, the tree produces clusters of creamy white flowers that have a mild fragrance. The "pea pods" that follow the flowers are unusual in that they are constricted between each seed, giving the fruit the appearance of a string of beads. Despite its name, this tree is really native to China. Also known as Styphnolobium japonicum.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese silver grass (Miscanthus floridulus)

    Also known as: Japanese silver grass, giant miscanthus, Pacific island silver grass, sawgrass, swordgrass, tupon nette

    Japanese silver grass, is also referred to as giant miscanthus to separate it from the smaller species of miscanthus that is commonly found in gardens. Giant miscanthus can grow up to 14 feet tall and can be overwhelming in smaller gardens. It is a warm season, clumping grass. Borderine hardy in zone 5.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese Spirea (Spiraea japonica (syn. Spiraea x bumalda))

    Also known as: Japanese spirea

    Japanese spirea is a favorite of many gardeners, offering a wide range of sizes and cultivars. The dense, compact habit, large clusters of late spring and summer flowers in pink or white, with excellent fall color provides many seasons of care-free enjoyment in the landscape.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet), 
    • Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese tree lilac (Syringa reticulata subsp. reticulata)

    Also known as: Japanese tree lilac

    Japanese tree lilac is larger than the shrub lilacs and it blooms a little later. It produces large clusters of small creamy-white, fragrant flowers.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese umbrella-pine (Sciadopitys verticillata)

    Also known as: Japanese umbrella-pine, umbrella-pine

    Japanese umbrella-pine is not a true pine, but it is a needled evergreen. In northern Illinois, this tree is marginal and should be planted in protected site. Wind can be a problem in winter, so avoid windy sites.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese white pine (Pinus parviflora)

    Also known as: Japanese white pine

    Japanese white pine is a dense, slow-growing evergreen with a smaller stature which makes it an excellent specimen for small landscapes or space restrictions.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet), 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese wisteria (Wisteria floribunda)

    Also known as: Japanese wisteria, Japanese wistaria

    Japanese wisteria is a beautiful vine in flower, but it is an aggressive grower and is considered invasive in some areas, especially in the southern United States. Review of risks should be undertaken before selecting this vine for planting sites.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese yew (Taxus cuspidata)

    Also known as: Japanese yew

    Japanese yews are a popular and versatile evergreen shrub. They make a good foundation or accent plant and dark green leaves make good background for colorful shrubs and perennials. There are numerous cultivars available, varying greatly in size, so choose carefully to find the right one for your site. Be aware that the leaves, seeds, and bark of yews are poisonous.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily), 
    • Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Japanese zelkova (Zelkova serrata)

    Also known as: Japanese zelkova

    Japanese zelkova is closely related to elms but is resistant to Dutch elm disease (DED). It tolerates urban conditions well and can be used as a street tree. This tree has interesting bark, clean serrated foliage and good fall color.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Judd's viburnum (Viburnum x juddii)

    Also known as: Judd's viburnum, Judd viburnum

    This hybrid viburnum produces early spring, snowball-type clusters of pink buds that open to white, highly fragrant flowers. A dense, rounded shrub reaching 6 to 8 feet high with blue-green leaves. Korean spice viburnum is one of the parent of this hybrid.

    Size Range: 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • June grass (Koeleria macrantha)

    Also known as: June grass, prairie June grass, crested hair grass

    June grass is a native grass that can be very useful in tough sites like areas with dry conditions. It is a cool season, clumping grass.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium plant (12-24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Kalm's St. John's Wort (Hypericum kalmianum)

    Also known as: Kalm's St. John Wort, Kalm's hypericum, Kalms St. John Wort, Kalm's Saint Johnwort

    A sun-loving, low-growing, 2 to 3 feet high, native shrub found in moist, low areas in the Upper Great Lakes. The long-blooming, bright yellow summer flowers have showy, pompom-like stamens. Best used in mass for full effect.

    Size Range: 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet), 
    • Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • North America

  • Katsura tree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum)

    Also known as: katsura tree, katsuratree, katsura-tree, Japanese katsura

    The katsura tree, native to Japan, makes an excellent specimen or shade tree in Midwestern landscapes. Its foliage offers an array of color throughout the year. In spring, heart-shaped leaves emerge reddish-purple, changing to blue-green as they mature. In autumn the color display changes again as leaves turn clear yellow or apricot color.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

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