Monday, January 10, 2011

The Mullet

I wanted to illustrate a way to trim or undercut an evergreen shrub to make a beautiful display area.  There used to be a wonderful example in the side yard of the Kewanee Congregational Church.  I had a great photo of it that I can no longer find.  Today the area isn't that great.  

The idea is to have a curve made out of stones.  The inside of the curve is lower than the outside.  The outside has a birm built up so it slopes backward from the top of the wall.  In the middle of the back of the stone wall is a medium sized evergreen bush.  It's the cascading type.

The evergreen has had the front portion trimmed from under.  This undercutting lets the bush look like a mullet.  Since I no longer have the Congo photo, you're just going to have to do visualization.  

Picture Rod Steward with green hair and where his face is substitute dark brown shade.  Substitute his neck for the trunk of the bush.  This area would be shaded because his bangs hang over.  Then visualize his shoulders as the rock.     

The area of his chest would be a semi shaded area in front of the curved rock wall.  Because his bangs overhang the wall and the front of the wall - it will be somewhat shaded.  It's a great place for a bird bath or other statuary.  Also, plants like ferns, impatients, moss, tulips and perhaps some other rocks of interest.  
This might be a simple (REALLY SIMPLE) drawing of what I'm trying to example - or - it's a bad (REALLY BAD) drawing of Rod Steward.  I'll let you be the judge on this one.

This new Golden Globe Arborvita will one day be a good option for mullet undercutting. 

Nikki Sixx's Mullet.  This allows you to visualize a piece of statuary at the front of the wall.  Yes, I know this probably isn't on the same level as the beautiful and peaceful little area at the Congo Church but come on folks work with me here.

Juniper Gold Coast, 3 x 5 ft.  This juniper would work if it had been pruned when it was younger.

Others that would work:
Arcadia Juniper, Juniperus sabina 'Arcadia' 18" x 5 ft. - bright green
The Grey Owl Juniper, J. virginiana 'Grey Owl',  3 x 5 ft. - gray
Juniper - Mint Julep, 6 x 6 ft - fountain like branches
The Bald Cypress Cascade Falls, Taxodium distichum 'Cascade Falls', 12 x 5 ft. - weeping speciman

Sorry, but if there's talk of mullets, there has to be a picture of the mullet boy:  Billy Ray Cyrus.  Do not, under any condition, undercut your evergreen into a Billy Ray Mullet - Just say NO or, you'll have a bad case of "Achy Breaky Garden"

And "No" Mrs. Carbunkle, I haven't been drinking.  A little line dancing maybe...

Stewart, Sixx and Cyrus photos courtsey of their publicity.

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