It is interesting to note which side of a plant is the most aesthetically appealing or attractive. The idea that every plant has a “face” comes second-nature to seasoned landscape artists. Some varieties are fairly symmetrical on all sides. These ones do not need as much consideration when determining planting direction. However, varieties like Picea omorika ‘Pendula Bruns’ and Pinus parvifora ‘Fukuzumi’ with very unique and sculptural shapes, often have a particular angle that accentuates their individual form.
Additionally, it is also helpful to consider the growth tendency of the individual specimen before deciding which direction to orient the tree. This is on a case-by-case basis and should include factors such as sun exposure, proximity of neighbouring plants, and distance from pathways, lawn, etc. While some of our customers are novice gardeners, many are likely already well-acquainted with this. For those who might benefit from some additional planting guidance, we will be providing a smiley face sticker on the container of 3-gallon and larger plants to indicate which side we see as the most attractive view of the plant. We want to assist you in making your garden the most outstanding display from every angle.
Here is an example of the aforementioned ‘Fukuzumi’ in a landscape setting. See how the photo on the left shows the fullest side of the tree, and the photo on the right has the lower branch on the back side. This is a simple example of a factor that would decide the planting direction.
One more tree to consider is this ‘Autumn Moon’ Japanese maple. Notice the windswept form of the branches. In this instance, it is best to choose the direction in which the plant is growing to point away from the main viewing area to expose the largest portion of the plant and prevent it from growing into the pathway in the future.