Trees and shrubs

A garden of colorful bark


Never let your garden lose its colors in winter! Turn it into an attractive place all year round by planting trees with decorative bark.

Introduced for ornamental purposes, trees with decorative bark present an infinite number of colors and textures.

Snakeskin effect in some marbled maples such asAcer pectinatum. Shimmering hues in trees that flake off to reveal other underlying colors such as black birch or thecyprus strawberry tree.

Copper and shiny appearance for the Manchurian cherry (Prunus maackii), arguably best suited to small spaces.

Beautiful bright red for the twigs of blood dogwood (Cornus alba), or variation of warm colors in the neon dogwood (Cornus sanguinea ‘Winter Flame’).

Vegetative staging

To highlight their bark, combine different trees according to their hues and textures. Combine them with native essences with tormented silhouettes like the small twisted hazelnut so hardy (Corylus avellana contorta) that brightens the winter of its long light yellow catkins or the crooked willow (Salix matsudana ‘Tortuosa’).

Group them by planting them well together to bring out the palette of their bark.

Use the pure whites or light shades of birch trees, such as the pristine bark Himalayan birch, to contrast with your dark-colored trees.

A wise location

When you choose, take into account your soil, your climate and the space you have.

If you plan to plant trees near your home, find out how deep their roots are to prevent them from damaging pipes or foundations.

Plant them in such a way that the sun is playing on the shimmering hues. To highlight the trunks, regularly remove low branches. Clean your colored trunks with a jet of water, if they sometimes get covered with lichens.

M.-C. H.

Visual credits: The Plant of the Month

Video: Harmony + Color in the Landscape. Volunteer Gardener (October 2020).