Garden assignment: Find a spot for forsythia

Plant a forsythia. It is a top ten must-have shrub in the North.

I’ve written before on the glory of the forsythia and what it takes to thrive. Read here. They love sun and make sure you purchase northern hardy varieties. That’s the gist of it.

We have to have forsythia in our lives, especially in the North, where the blast of flowers are as cheery as a pan of lemon bars and as necessary.

Lately, I’ve seen forsythia pop up on lists of shrubs to avoid in the northern landscape. That they are scrubby and homely in their off-season and thus, not worth the space they take up.

But I say no. They have enormous ta-da effect when the rest of the garden is trying to wake up, but is still generally brown. And they actually have a nice naturalized shape, so they are a welcome presence in the border. Not every element in a garden vista can be the star, all the time. We need supporting players, too.

Find a place for a forsythia in your landscape. It will lift your spirits.


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