Louis Raymond experiments in his own gardens like

a mad scientist, searching out plants that most people have

never seen before & figuring out how to make them perform.- The Boston Globe

…Louis Raymond ensures that trees can grow in Brooklyn…

or just about any other place where concrete consumes

the dirt and skyscrapers shield the sunshine.- USA Today


NEW Trips to Take!

Myrtle's easy when the conditions are right.


NEW Plants to Try!

Louis tries to capture the exact words to describe the fleeting but deep pleasures to be found in these Summer-into-Autumn incredibles.


New Gardening to Do!

Allergic to bees? You can still have an exciting garden, full of flowers and color and wildlife.


Plant Profiles

The Best Season Ever: Spindle Tree in Bloom

With so many trees in bloom in the Spring, those that flower in Summer are all the more noticeable. These are the flowers of a rare species of spindle tree, Euonymus carnosus that began flowering the second week of June. Now it's the third week in August, and flowers are still present.


Euonymus carnosus 081516 640


Below, a wider view of this Euonymus carnosus in mid-July. A month after flowering had begun in June, it was still peak performance—and, as in the picture above, flowers are still present in mid-August  How many other hardy trees can mount a floral performance in Summer, let alone for two months?


Euonymus carnosus overall 072716 640


And how 'bout these leaves? They are so glossy they seem to have been waxed, and so durable they escape the jaws of hungry browsers. Add sensational Fall color, and you have an ornamental that should be in every garden where it's hardy.


Euonymus carnosus foliage fingers 070916 640


Here's a close-up of the floral display back in early June.


Euonymus carnosus flowers fingers 070916 640 


And closer still.


Euonymus carnosus flowers fingers 070916 closer 640


Below, a sprig in close-up. Small cymes of flowers emerge from the bases of leaves on the portions of stems produced the previous season. Flower-free foliage at the tip of this stem has been forming just since May. Next Spring, that tip portion of this stem will produce both leaves and flowers—and, at its tip, additional leafy stem to continue the cycle the following year.


Euonymus carnosus stem details fingers 060916 640


Now to those bizarre "fleshy" flowers. Four thick petals open to expose a center that is hard and, seemingly, featureless; like the flowers of ivy, those of Euonymus carnosus forgo the usual obvious flaunting of pistils and stamens. They are solid and, to the touch, seem just as the species name of carnosus would literally have it: fleshy. Carnosus, carnivore, carnal: Flesh is at the core of all of them.


Euonymus carnosus flower details really close 060916 640


Together, this tree's Spring-into-Summer flowers plus Spring-Summer-and-Fall foliage create an elegant, nuanced show that lasts month after month. 


Euonymus carnosus overall 070916 640


Here's how to grow Euonymus carnosus—plus a look at its sensational deep-purple Fall foliage.

FacebookTwitterRSS Feed

Stay in touch!


Sign up for twice-monthly eNews, plus notification of new posts:


* indicates required