Landscape Design: Specimen Planting

Landscape design is a broad term. It can refer to the work performed by a number of individuals including a landscape architect. They all have a number of tools to draw on to give each garden they attend in St. Paul, MN, a unique look. One of the ways they have of accomplishing this is with specimen plants and plantings.

What Are Specimen Plants?

Specimen plants are individual plants. They possess a specific characteristic that makes them unique, desirable or extremely attractive. It is what makes them suitable for a specimen planting. The plant may:

* Be extremely large

* Have an unusual color

* Exhibit an interesting foliage texture

* Possess odd shape

A specimen plant is, above all ornamental, providing passerbys and visitors to your garden with a focal point. In general, the plant chosen to be a specimen planting loses its appeal or even becomes overwhelming if placed as part of a mass planting.

Mass plantings are the use of more than 2 of a plant in a bed or positon. They tend to be of the same plant. However, some plantings may be amassed according to species, size or even color. A good landscape design will utilize many types of plantings and plants to create the ideal garden for the client.

Types of Specimen Plants

Specimen plants are singular entities. They are not, however, restricted to a single species or genus. While popular specimen plants are often trees, they are not always. They can be plants of any size, shape, color and species. The main criteria are that they are showy, striking (in form and/or color) or simply outstanding. Several plants that a landscaper may utilize to create this central staging include:

* Flowering dogwood trees

* Weeping trees

* Corkscrew filberts

* ‘King’s Gold’ false cypress

* English holly

* Rhododendrons

* Shrub roses

* Peonies

* Bergenia

When choosing specimens, the classic approach is to prefer plantings that are perennials. The plants tend to be large and must be able to stand on their own. For some, it is important they be attractive and eye-catching all season long. Some may choose a striking annual and replace it with another plant when its flashy bloom or foliage is at an end. It is important for you to work with the landscaper to ensure the specimen plant is one you want, can connect to or meets your criteria.

Landscape Design

Landscaping is an art as well as a craft. It requires a complete understanding of the diverse elements involved in creating a plan. For some, a singular element is the specimen planting. They regard it as a means of creating a focal point around which the garden may revolve. For them, a landscape design that includes at least one such planting will help them establish a unique garden for each of their clients in St Paul.