Is there a plant in my garden that I take more for granted than Euonymous? Possibly lawn grasses. Or the yews in front of the house. This is a plant that the builders chose 40 years ago, put in every other yard on my street, and moved on. We though, have to live with this choice.

I pulled most of my Euonymous out at least 10 years ago, moving them to the back edge of my yard where the deer can freely browse them all winter long. I still have a couple of these vigorous growers in the front yard though, and they require pruning (gasp!) twice a year.


Not that I actually do it twice a year, but they're fast growers. There's one that has climbed a locust tree in the common ground behind my yard that is probably 40 feet (12m) tall. It may have died during last summer's drought.

One thing about Euonymous though, and the reason the builders probably planted so many: it's a tough plant that stays green all year.

Before I had all of the bamboo, Euonymous was a beacon of green in a sea of browns each winter.

It also produces a few berries each year, brilliant red gems briefly glowing in the green.

It seems like this plant wants to produce more of the inconspicuous flowers now, and I can't remember if that's unusual or not. I never really pay that much attention:

I have to admit that this is a pretty plant at this time of year.

Which is probably why the deer pay it so much attention.

I'm glad I didn't remove every single specimen of this plant!

(Does anybody know what species this is?)


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Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (December 14, 2012 at 9:53 AM)  

I think it's the default choice of homebuilders all over the country! There are variegated versions that are very pretty but I don't think I'd ever choose the plain green version myself.

Speaking of homebuilders, why is the landscaping they put in almost always boring? It wouldn't cost (much) more to create something less pedestrian...

Lisa  – (December 14, 2012 at 8:55 PM)  

Agreed. And it's not just boring, it's all planted right up against the foundation in a straight line. It would be no more difficult or costly to plant things correctly. Dumb.

By the way, I think that's just plain old euonymous japonica. Or just japonica.

Tira  – (December 15, 2012 at 9:43 AM)  

Never seen an euonymous, but maybe that is not a bad thing!

ricki  – (December 17, 2012 at 2:28 PM)  

I wanted Euonymous for strictly word nerd reasons: so I could have Euonymous in my Garden of Earthly Delights. I didn't think I really like the plant all that much, but in searching I found quite a few stellar varieties.

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