Blue spruce with 4 gold mops around it

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by mdlwn1, Oct 22, 2009.

  1. mdlwn1

    mdlwn1 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    I saw this 3 times today in about 1 mile and it reminded me how common this is. You know..the corner of the house with a blue spruce planted 3 feet away from the siding (cause we all know trees dont grow). Then to gain some contrast they put 3-5 gold mops. To the guys that have no eye..which apparently is most in this profession...let me clue you in. Pale blue and burnt yellow/brown not only do not look good together..but it would be hard to find something that looks worse...(except for the red that you will no doubt think is missing) Combine that with tan siding or red brick...and the pain multiplies. Then because you mow the will probably also take a pair of gas shears to the gold mops. Thats where the brown fun begins. Your not supposed to trim them like that...its a HAND PRUNE PLANT. Not that a V shaped brown/yellow plant doesnt have it's uses somewhere...just not here. What was your plan with the spruce? To remove it in 4 years?...or maybe you figured you would plant it so poorly that it would either rot or be attacked by enough bugs to do the job for you. Did you know that there is a beautiful variety of "mop"cypress"? that is GREEN...not yellow and when hand pruned only has a beautiful cascading waterfall like effect? It might take some of the pain out of what you've done. Why dont you guys find someone with a bit of a design passion..let them draw up something that isnt horticultural vomit and all you do is the install? You'll look like the hero while your name will continue to improve and GAIN momentum. The best landscape install I ever did (money, quality,customer satisfaction) was off a spec sheet from a design firm. Like putting legos together.
  2. VO Landscape Design

    VO Landscape Design LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Mt. Pleasant Ia.
    Messages: 365

    Great name for a band.
    I agree. Even some off the most basic/easy things people mess up. Or the home owner saw "this" somewhere else.
  3. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    That is pretty funny , but I like yellow, red, and green... :) You can, topiary, almost anything, so trimming a spruce tree is nothing.

    However, there is always a danger that whatever you are keeping small, may one day just start to die back. With a spruce 2-3 feet away from the house I would certainly eliminate any branches facing the house, right up to the trunk. You are growing only half a tree, but a spruce may do that forever. Juniperus kind... not so well.
  4. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    When people see " Dwarf Blue Spruce" they automatically think it's going to stay cute and not become too big when in reality it can still go upwards of 20 feet or so.

    Had a job recently where I added gold mops, one close to, (you guessed it) a blue spruce. Needless to say the spruce got topped and turned into a topiary and hopefully they will still get some use out of it before it becomes a nuisance.
  5. prizeprop

    prizeprop LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 822

    how does one prune a gold mop, dont know.seems pretty lacey.
  6. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Gold mops are not that fast growing and I never saw one get very large. The blue spruce is what is going to outgrow the space in short order.
  7. mdlwn1

    mdlwn1 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    Gold mops can grow well towards 20'. There are..or were 2 in Toms River NJ on rt 37 by the saturn dealership and the old gas station. (I did that cause there are a few guys on here from there) PRIZE....if they have already been trimmed..not much you can do except let them grow out for a year or 2. You hand prune the new "wood" that starts to grow each year. When it sends out a new branch you cut it at the "armpit" or next cross branch...never actually cutting the leaves or needles (yellow part).
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Ok, sorry, I was evidently thinking of a foundation planting of another kind.

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