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Fragrant Gardening: Trimming a Sweet Almond shrub

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Beach_Barbie
Kure Beach, NC
(Zone 9a)

May 17, 2010
7:16 AM

Post #7800196

I have a sweet almond shrub (Aloysia virgata) growing close to my house. I like the location, but it gets in the way of the sidewalk going to the front door. I want to trim it in an attractive manner that will give me the most blooms. From what I've read, this should be pretty easy and I'm familiar with trimming trees and shrubs.
Is there any things I should keep in mind that might not be obvious?
Thanks!
Barb

P.S. Looking at this pic, I'm thinking I could go nuts and espalier it against the wall... Hhmmm...

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Chantell

Chantell
Middle of, VA
(Zone 7a)

May 17, 2010
6:29 PM

Post #7802261

I just wanna say how jealous I am...LOOK at that beauty!!!! Sadly I'm clueless as to a suggestions...I'm sure one of the others will jump in though...
vossner
Richmond, TX
(Zone 9a)

May 18, 2010
7:30 AM

Post #7803863

Beachbarbie, I'm afraid your SAB is planted in an inadequate place. These plants get HUGE, in fact, can be small trees. Sure you can prune, but you will be cheating yourself of the fragrant blooms as you will have to prune often, maybe every mo or so to keep walkway clear. It wouldn't be hard to transplant, especially after a rain, and survival rate would be good if planted in a open space. The fragrance is so strong, I think you could still enjoy the lovely aroma from further away. I guess you could espalier it, but is not a natural growth pattern for this plant, so it may look weird, or you will spend lots of time wrangling it into shape.

Maybe you can plant an agastache in that location. Wouldn't have to prune and they are mostly xeric. Also, salvia clevelandii, another xeric and low shrub. I adore it, in my top 5 frag. shrubs.

Chantell

Chantell
Middle of, VA
(Zone 7a)

May 18, 2010
11:29 AM

Post #7804573

salvia clevelandii???? Gonna have to look that one up...what's the fragrance like?
vossner
Richmond, TX
(Zone 9a)

May 18, 2010
11:48 AM

Post #7804643

to me, it reminds me of sweet smelling incense. not strong enough to give u a headache, but strong enough that you can smell it 10-15 ft away. I adore it. Annie's Annuals carries it. sometimes I see it locally, but rarely. Mostly in late summer. I have killed a couple to overwatering. It is really a water miser.

Chantell

Chantell
Middle of, VA
(Zone 7a)

May 18, 2010
12:24 PM

Post #7804752

Oooooo me thinks I need one...hmmm I better check its hardiness first eh?
Beach_Barbie
Kure Beach, NC
(Zone 9a)

May 19, 2010
7:12 AM

Post #7806678

Vossner - I've been considering moving it for a while now. I do have a good spot that will give it enough room. Guess I'll just have to do it!
Chantell - this is one of my favorites. One of those "indespensible" plants. The smell is wonderful.
Barb
vossner
Richmond, TX
(Zone 9a)

May 19, 2010
8:14 AM

Post #7806871

BB, I think it is a decision you will not regret. But, just in case, cut a couple of small branches now and stick in a very light soil mix or even vermiculite and place in a shaded area...just in case transplant doesn't take. They root easily for me, should be the same for u.

Chantell

Chantell
Middle of, VA
(Zone 7a)

May 19, 2010
8:58 AM

Post #7807036

"root easily" - hmph...ROTFLOL I did buy one and put in my back yard last year...but I think this plant is borderline hardy here...guess I should meander out there and see if she's still 'with us.'
vossner
Richmond, TX
(Zone 9a)

May 19, 2010
9:03 AM

Post #7807054

C, we had a harsh (for us) winter and mine died to the ground. First time ever. I hope yours was well mulched. I rooted some last fall but have given them all away locally since a few of my buddies lost theirs. But yes, very easy to root.
Beach_Barbie
Kure Beach, NC
(Zone 9a)

May 19, 2010
5:11 PM

Post #7808505

I'll do that. I tried rooting some unsuccessfully late last Fall. Should do better now.
Barb
islandgirl37
Marathon, FL
(Zone 11)

June 1, 2011
4:30 PM

Post #8602354

I just got 3 of these. One I am going to keep compact in a pot and grow as a bush. The other 2 I am training as standards hoping they will be small trees in a couple of years. The smell is incredible. Vanilla, almond, cherry. It reminds me a lot of Heliotrope.
Beach_Barbie
Kure Beach, NC
(Zone 9a)

June 2, 2011
2:20 AM

Post #8603268

ig - sounds like a great idea.
The one I transplanted didn't make it, so now I'm without one. I need to replace it.
Glad you responded to this thread, I had forgotten to look for one.
A reason to plant shop. Yes!
Barb
islandgirl37
Marathon, FL
(Zone 11)

June 8, 2011
12:43 PM

Post #8618248

I'm sorry yours didn't handle the transplant Beach_Barbie. You just never know, some plants seem to handle it, others never recuperate. I'm glad to know this one is fussy about being moved once it is in the ground and has some size to it so I won't try to move mine once they are established. One of my Milky Way trees bloomed today, lovely, fresh scent. It sort of reminds me of Simple Green, Jasmine and Pikake A very complex fragrance on this one.

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