Most of you know by now that I enjoy (am a bit obsessed with) beautiful gardens, particularly those that combine both formal and informal. Espalier trees are unique elements that can add both formality to a garden in a natural way. Espalier is a tree or shrub whose branches are trained to grow flat against a wall, supported on a lattice or a framework of stakes.
I took this picture while we were in Belgium. I'd never seen such a tall espalier tree.
Another example of a tall espalier from the website of one of my favorite landscape designers, Arne Maynard.
Trees can also be trained to grow in a diamond pattern, a more rustic version of a traditional trellis fence.
An alternative to a regular wood fence... live willow.
Fruit trees can be trained on wire between aged wood posts.
At Mount Vernon, espalier fruit trees on simple wood sticks add greenery against a brick wall.
As the espalier tree grows, it becomes a scupture in the garden...
a live sculpture that changes with the seasons, flowering in the Spring...
and bearing fruit in the Summer and Fall.
This is how nutty I am about gardens... When Steve asked me what I wanted to do on my birthday last Sunday, I told him that I wanted to go to Bountiful Gardens.
I plan to include a couple of espalier Fuji apple trees in our Patina Farm kitchen garden. I know our family will pull the fruit right off the tree.
This kumquat tree will a pop of orange to the garden.
Purple grape vines, with their deep colored fruit and beautiful foliage, will find a home at Patina Farm.
Hydrangeas that mature in color from lime green to white are a definite must in my new garden.
As I was focused on the variety of organic plant material, Steve was admiring the beautiful decay of the greenhouses at Bountiful Gardens.
If you find yourself looking for some connection to garden beauty, I highly recommend spending an hour at Bountiful Gardens.
Do you have any espalier trees? Any advice? places to find gardeb inspiration? Please share!
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