Planting An Emperor 1 Japanese Maple - New Firepit Area - June 2021
Back about a week ago, I posted a preview of where we were going to put our firepit area in the backyard with a little gravel area surrounded by some beds and (eventually) linked with a little path from behind the Northern Red Oak tree. One of the new things that I'm planting in the border bed between the lawn and the firepit is a new tree. And it isn't just *any* tree.
It is a tree that I've been thinking about for a while - based on my musings about how I should add a couple of Japanese Maple trees to our yard. In that post, I included both the traditional (and widely available) Bloodgood Japanese Maple and mentioned that there had been a tweak to that cultivar to make it even more Cold-weather-hardy (for our Zone 5b) with something called the Emperor I Japanese Maple tree. Ever since then, I've been looking for an Emperor I tree. I've come across a few - in various sizes and costs, but they were all too expensive for me. As is the way with MOST Japanese Maple trees. However...in the back of my mind, I keep thinking about what my Dad always tells me: You don't get what you don't pay for.
And that's why I grabbed this tree as soon as I saw it at the Morton Arboretum Spring Plant sale. It is a good-sized Emperor I tree that was just $35. It is about six feet tall and has a thin trunk, but has a nice shape for such a young tree. Here it is against our house when I brought it home below:
Here (Below) is the tag listing it as an Acer palmatum 'Emperor I' and says it will get 15-20' in height and 12-15' in spread.
So, back to the firepit area. In that border bed between where we're going to sit and where the lawn is growing, I wanted to add a little bit of vertical interest. This tree would do just the job. I dug a good hole (no fifty-cent hole for THIS tree), amended it with a little bit of chicken scratch manure and watered it in good. Here's (below) how it looks before mulch and before I install the edging for the gravel (you can see the temporary plastic edging in the photo below that I was using to kind of site my lines.
1. Flowering Pear in backyard on north side.
3. Japanese flowering cherry
4 and 5: 2 Lindens that I espalier'd and placed by the south fence line near our kitchen windows.
7. Nat's Saucer Magnolia in our front yard
2018 (17 planted. 6 Dead):
14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21. These Frans Fontaine Hornbeams.
22. A replacement Chanticleer Pear tree (3" caliper) out front by our garage
25. Our replanted/replacement Dawn Redwood. Same spot as the first.
26. This teeny-tiny Bald Cypress that I planted in the front yard, in between our driveway and our neighbor to the north.
33. My new Weeping White Spruce that will only grow about 4' wide placed near the fence line alongside the espalier'd Lindens.
46. A small Northern Red Oak tree - our first Oak tree planted.
47. A 'decapitated' Lavender Twist Weeping Redbud that I planted on a whim.
49. A tall(ish) London Plane tree that suffered some transplant and frost shock, but seemed to recover.