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

Today in the Garden of a Lifetime: The Ruthless Pruning of the Trumpet Vine



The pergola at the north end of the Red Garden is busy:  Trumpet vine front-and-center, long-chain wisteria (off-screen) at each front corner, 'Mandarin' honeysuckle, back-center and rising up to the roof of the carriage house and, flanking it right and left, a huge form of rambler rose, 'Sander's White'.


In warm weather, the pergola is clothed with thick foliage and flowers.  Now it's the off-season, and the pipe frame is as exposed as all the twigs and tangles of a Summer's-worth of exuberant growth.


Time to prune!  Today: The trumpet vine.  It blooms only at the tips of the new stems that will form next Spring.  This season's new stems were full in leaf and dramatic in flower but, when they are revealed by frost, the gracelessness of their angling upward growth is all too clear. 




Thank goodness, they can all be cut off.  This calls attention to the muscular framework of the vine's permanent trunk and horizontal scaffolding of branches while, come Spring, also encouraging a heavy new crop of flowering stems.




Campsis radicans  is quick to prune, and the clean-lined result is so satisfying.  It's just the warm-up to dealing with the honeysuckle, seen wandering far from the center panel of the high back portion of the pergola, and the poor 'Sander's White' roses, one of which has pulled away from the back entirely.  It's the diagonal tangle at the lower left, slanting upward into the mid-reaches of the honeysuckle.




It's more much of a project to rework the honeysuckle and 'Sander's White' roses.  Stay tuned for their surprisingly open look after they've been pruned for the Winter, and their even more surprising fullness and beauty, as they peak next Spring and Summer.


Here's how to grow trumpet vine.

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