Purchased at the HPSO spring sale in 2006, Enkianthus companulatus ‘Red Bells’ has lived in a pot all this time.
We have determined that this must be the year of its liberation, so we have been moving it around from place to place, trying to determine the perfect spot where we can enjoy the subtle coloration of its bell-shaped flowers and still give it the little bit of shade it craves.
A hand truck comes in mighty handy at times like these. I can move big, heavy pots around with ease, all by myself, using this little garden buddy.
The plant tag said that this small tree would top out at 8′, but the one in the display garden at the Stark Street Portland Nursery is more like 12′ at 27 years of age. My tendency is always to plant things too closely. I will use this information to try to mend my ways and give this beauty plenty of elbow room. It is a relative of Rhododendrons, so we know what it likes. Richard gives his Rhody’s a yearly dose of cottonseed and plants them high, with lots of grit in the hole for good drainage. I’m pretty sure ‘Red Bells’ will thank us with years of May into June blossoms and fall color.