It’s an oft seen shrub around New Hampshire. Monster sized burning bushes (Euonymus alatus), separate one home from another, grow against walls and foundations, and line many a driveway just in this small community. Known as an invasive shrub that has jumped its bounds into fields and woods, it was once loved by gardeners and landscapers for the long-lasting flaming red leaves in the fall…. now prohibited to be sold in the states of New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
Alas, this winter we became the owners of a huge old burning bush at our new home, a bush that absolutely blocked our view through a window. We rooted out all these shrubs from our Virginia borders with truck and chains, but this mighty burning bush was almost 9′ tall, old and thick and a little too close to the gas line for that. A better solution was to cut it level with the soil and poison the trunk. The search for an acceptable replacement for the space began as soon as the nurseries opened for the season. We decided on a viburnum, a very nice native that will give us some fall color and give the birds their berries during the winter. But I needed some help.
We made an appointment with Tom Lynch, a talented young landscaper from Ogunquit ME, who didn’t mind meeting me outdoors on a rainy day to point out some of his favorite viburnums.
Then finally ended up with two beauties…”Chicago Lustre” and “Mariesii.” With local temperatures dipping low in the evenings and cool spring days, we hope both will thrive before summer heat is upon us.