Last week, I was visiting one of my favorite communities visiting a client’s sick Hibiscus plant.

(I’m not kidding about making a ‘house call’ about a single, indoor plant.  I will tell you more about that story in another post).

So, I was finished with my visit and decided to drive around the neighborhood.  This particular community has many beautiful examples of landscape design and great opportunities for taking pictures of plants.

On the other hand, this same community has many examples of “What NOT to Do” to your plants and I like to capture photos of those things as well.


As I was driving, I saw the following example of improper pruning of shrubs.  But instead of round green balls, I saw this….


 At first, I couldn’t believe my eyes.

Then I tried to figure out what the purpose of the unusual shapes were meant to be.

I slowly drove back so that I could take a picture.

Now, I have spoken at length about the unhealthy and sometimes unattractive results from pruning using hedge-trimmers for flowering shrubs.

But I must admit that if I had to choose between round, green balls or a “modern shrub sculpture”, that I would probably lean towards the “shrub sculpture” because it is way more interesting 😉
What do you think?  Would prefer ‘green balls’ or more of a ‘free-form shrub sculpture’?
Noelle Johnson, aka, 'AZ Plant Lady' is a horticulturist, certified arborist, and landscape consultant who helps people learn how to create, grow, and maintain beautiful desert gardens that thrive in a hot, dry climate. She does this through her consulting services, her online class Desert Gardening 101, and her monthly membership club, Through the Garden Gate. As she likes to tell desert-dwellers, "Gardening in the desert isn't hard, but it is different."

9 replies
  1. Andrea
    Andrea says:

    Hi Noelle, for me these looks more beautiful than the formal shapes which you don't like. From afar they look like green rocks and i love them. I laughed at Deb's comment that they look like giant caterpillar.

    Reply
  2. Pege
    Pege says:

    I don't think I like this free form. I'm not sure what they are trying to say…. Have the shrubs just gotten so big they don't know what to do with it? I have come to not liking the green balls either. Especially since it gets rid of the flowers, which is really the intent of many shrubs, right?

    Reply

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