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TREES & plants

Tree and plant descriptions

  • Norway spruce

    Picea abies
    Norway spruce is a large, pyramidal tree with long, cylindrical cones that hang like ornaments from the weeping branches against the dark green foliage. This sun-loving, 50- to 80-foot-high tree is often used as windbreaks, screens, or hedges in large-scale landscapes.
  • Oak-leaved hydrangea

    Hydrangea quercifolia
    Plant advice from The Morton Arboretum: Oak-leaved hydrangea is a shrub for all seasons. The large leaves resemble oak leaves and are deep green and sometimes glossy. They turn a deep burgundy in fall and sometimes can persist into winter. The large cone-shaped flower clusters open white and eventually turn a purplish-pink. Older bark is cinnamon brown color and peels to create a texture that makes this plant interesting even when the leaves are gone.
  • Ohio buckeye

    Aesculus glabra
    The Ohio buckeye is a neatly rounded tree with low, sweeping branches and dense foliage that provides deep shade. It is one of the first trees to leaf out in the spring. This tree is susceptible to leaf blotch.
  • Old fashioned weigela

    Weigela florida
    Plant advice from The Morton Arboretum: Weigela fills gardens with bright tubular flowers in early summer. There are many cultivated varieties available with different flower colors.
  • Oriental arborvitae

    Platycladus orientalis (syn. Thuja orientalis)
    Oriental arborvitae is similar in appearance to other species of arborvitae. Nurseries usually sell the cultivars of this plant rather than the actual species and those cultivars can vary greatly in appearance. Winter protection may be needed for this plant. Because it is typically short in stature, oriental arborvitae may be planted under utility lines.
  • Oriental spruce

    Picea orientalis
    Oriental spruce can reach a height of 50 to 60 feet with a spread of 15 to 25 feet. The delicate texture of the small needles and graceful habit make this a good choice for the home landscape.
  • Osage orange

    Maclura pomifera
    Commonly called Osage orange or hedge apple, this medium-sized tree has a short trunk and rounded crown with large globular fruit produced by female trees. The wood was once used as fence post throughout the Midwest. Osage orange produces messy fruit and tends to have an invasive nature.
  • Pagoda dogwood

    Cornus alternifolia
    Pagoda dogwood is an excellent native plant for the four season garden. The unique horizontal branching pattern has a distinct tiered habit, often catching snow in the winter. Clusters of white flowers in the spring, dark green foliage turns a beautiful burgundy-red in fall, and blue-black berries attract many birds.
  • Panicled hydrangea

    Hydrangea paniculata
    Plant advice from The Morton Arboretum: In late summer, the white flower clusters of this large shrub add a fresh note of bloom that lasts into early fall. Native to China and Japan, this is probably the most cold-hardy species of hydrangea. Because panicled hydrangea can grow very large and spreading and has a coarse texture, it can be difficult to use in home landscapes, but more compact cultivated varieties have been developed.
  • Paper birch

    Betula papyrifera
    This native tree has lovely white bark and yellow fall color, but is not a good tree for tough sites. It demonstrates some resistance to bronze birch borer (BBB).