A homeowner recently invited us out to talk about re-landscaping her front yard. She wanted everything replaced except the row of scheffleras growing right up against her house. “I know they don’t look the best, but we’ve had them forever,” she said, looking at the sparse leaves on top. “Can’t you put some kind of fertilizer on them?”
The problem is that her schlefferas had been trimmed to four feet for 18 years, when the poor things really wanted to grow to six or eight feet. And even that aside, the life expectancy for any ornamental is about 15 years, which is stretching it. Her old schlefferas really needed to be dug out and the entire area redesigned with new plant material.
So we know you’re dying to ask: Did the woman heed our advice? No. She decided she could live with her landscape for a while instead of introducing vigorous new plants that she could enjoy immediately while increasing the value of her home. Something to think about when you decide to renew your landscape. Meanwhile, here’s what a healthy schleffera looks like!