Clock Tower garden, Rome, Ga. plant guide

The new clock tower garden is built on the theme “As Time Goes By.” It has been dedicated to Anne Culpepper of Rome, Ga. This is a smart phone-friendly guide to the plants involved. Something will be in bloom every day of the year. The pictures for this article were taken on May 1, 2019.

From the parking lot, walk up the sidewalk that is parallel to E. 3rd Street. The garden will be on your right. Flower bed information and butterfly plants will be added at the end of the article. Entering you will have this view:

ct 1a enter from parking lot
Coming from the parking lot at the clock tower, walk parallel to E 3rd Street. The garden is on your right. At the corner, rest a moment on the bench and then turn to follow N. 5th Avenue. Enjoy the tour.
ct 1 dogwood cherokee brave
Dogwood, Cherokee Brave. Blooms in the spring. Provides shade in the summer and beautiful color in the fall. Berries for the birdies.
ct 2 tea olive screen
Tea olive. A row of these has been planted on the back border to give a background to this section of the garden. These plants are evergreen and they bloom periodically over the spring, summer and fall. When blooming, they fill the air with fragrance.
ct 3 red drift rose
The red “drift rose” will bloom periodically all summer. After the first flush of blooms it will rest a bit and then come back for more. It will form a good low accent to the trees as they grow.
ct 4 Seven brothers
The Seven Sons tree. This plant will bloom and smell good in September. It is meant to be grown into a cascading tree form. When the noted horticulturist Shannen Ferry passed away, I found a stick in a flower pot in her back yard. It looked purposeful, so I tended to it and the following year it grew and prospered. This plant is what the “stick in a pot” has become. Planted in the clock tower garden in honor of Shannen Ferry.
ct 5 coral drift rose
Coral Drift rose. This is a companion plant to the red drift . The neat thing about this pictorial essay is that it can be a reference to notice the growth of the plants “as time goes by.”
ct 6 chinese fringe tree
The “Chinese Fringe Tree.” This is a medium sized tree reaching 25 feet or more. It produces a profusion of white flowers in the spring. I will include a picture of a mature tree so that you can see what I see when I look at these three sticks.
micky's fringe tree
For years I have admired this beautiful fringe tree in the back yard collection of Micky Sachs-Smith. Now, following the concept of “As time goes by…” look at the plant in the garden with its surrounding companions and you can visualize what is possible..
ct 7 gold mound spirea
gold mound spirea. This beauty keeps its foliage most of the year. In early summer the golden leaves are adorned by a profusion of lavender flowers. It gets off to a slow start but will be a show piece in a couple of years.
ct 8 hydrangea phantom
Hydrangea “phantom” is a rather new paniculata variety which gives us glorious large, brilliant white flowers in the summer.. Be sure to watch this one as time goes by.
ct 10 camellia
Several camellias (and one sasanqua) are planted in the garden. The intention is to grow them into a tree form that will blend in with the smaller shrubs to give dimension to the garden. These bloom in the fall and winter.
ct 11 frostproof gardenia
Frostproof gardenia–named for the town of Frostproof Florida–is a very tolerant, low-growing plant that blooms with white, fragrant flowers throughout the summer season. It is evergreen.
ct 12 dogwood stellar pink
Dogwood, “stellar Pink.” This plant is placed so that it will grow up to shade the bench in the summers. A wonderful place for meditation. Thanks to the neighbors for the arborvitae screen.
ct 14 buddleia pink delight and white bouquet
Buddleia, the butterfly bush. This plant blooms profusely during the warm summer months. Butterflies love it. We have included two different colors in the garden planting. You’ll have to check back to see which is which. I will, too–I lost the tags.
ct 18 hydrangea
This is a hydrangea but I’m not too sure that I remember its name. I’ll guarantee you that it will be special though, and I’ll find out what it is when it blooms. It should be in bloom before the end of May, though, so check it out.
ct 20 camellia sasanqua cleopatra
Camellia sasanqua “Cleopatra.” This is a jewel that should begin blooming around mid-November and continue for quite some time. It will be pruned and shaped into a tree form as time goes by.
ct 21 autumn fern
Autumn fern–behind the corner bench. This is my favorite of the perennial ferns. It is almost evergreen and, in the spring, it sends out beautiful fresh fluffy fronds. Too bad they don’t smell really good so I could have used, “fresh fluffy fragrant fronds.” Oh, Well
ct 22 hosta stained glass
To my mind, the “stained glass” hosta is one of the showiest . Over the years it will spread and multiply and it will made a dramatic show all summer long. It also blooms, which is a bonus.
ct 23 flowering cherry
The Yoshino cherry trees, which had been planted previously, are lovely when they bloom in the spring. This variety is probably the latest blooming of all of the cherries. They also offer a bit of shade for a hot summer day.
ct 24 abelia rose creek
Abelia “rose creek” is a very dependable variety of the old-fashioned favorite. It is almost evergreen and it blooms nicely in the summer. Heat tolerant.
ct 26 azalea
We planted a few of the larger-growing azaleas for spots of color. This one is the “purple Formosa.” We also used George Tabor and G.G. Gerbing. They will bloom in early spring and offer beautiful evergreen foliage.
ct 28 camellia
I believe this is Camellia sasanqua “Alabama Beauty.” We will prune and grow it into a shade tree to make this bench comfy and cool in the summertime. It should bloom in January/February
ct 28 dogwood
Another “stellar pink” dogwood. Looking down South 5th Avenue. This one is for Michelle to enjoy.
ct 32 azaleas george tabor gg gerbing
We end up with a few more azaleas. It will be interesting to see how much they have grown five years for now. Plants have a habit of growing, as time goes by.

If you got this far you also passed a “butterfly garden” that qualifies this garden as a part of the Rosalynn Carter Butterfly Trail which starts in Plains, Georgia, and goes north. The butterfly garden plants include: Salvia “pink dawn;” Agastache “Kudos Mandarin;” Echinacea “crazy pink;” Achillea  “moonshine;” Salvia guaranitica, “black and blue;” Asclepias incanarta, “butterfly weed;” Monarda, “sugar buzz;” Rudbeckia fulgida “Goldsturm;” Helenium, “Short and sassy;” red salvia; and parsley. I find it interesting that the swallowtail butterfly lays eggs on the parsley and the ensuing caterpillars come out and eat the leaves.

In the seasonal color beds,  pansies are planted in October. About the first of May when the pansies are looking good but before they croak from the heat, we will take them out and plant summer flowers which will last until the first frost. The flowers for this year (2019) are Dragon wing begonias, Sunpatiens hybrids, Mexican heather, begonia “big,” angelonia, white cathedral salvia, and a few others. Come often and watch them as they enjoy the summer heat.

Thank you for visiting the garden site and Johntheplantman.

John P. Schulz, Landscape Artist.

The sign, designed by J.R. Schulz of Coosa fame.

Clocktower Garden sign for blog
You will find this signage when you visit the garden. I would like to thank Anne Culpepper, Lisa Smith, and all of the other nice people who supported this project. Signage design by John Robert (J.R.) Schulz





Published by John P.Schulz

I lost my vocal cords a while back due to throat cancer. The laryngectomy sent me on a quest to find and learn to use my new, altered voice. I am able to talk now with a really small and neat new prosthesis. My writing reflects what I have learned in my search for a voice. My site publishes a daily motivational quote and a personal comment. I write an article a week for my blog, which deals with a lot of the things that I do in the garden. I am also the author of Requiem for a Redneck and the new Redemption for a Redneck--novels portraying the lives and doings of folks around the north Georgia hills. I have an English Education degree from the University of Georgia and very happily married to the lovely Dekie Hicks. You may enjoy my daily Quotes and Notes at

5 thoughts on “Clock Tower garden, Rome, Ga. plant guide

  1. John, Really enjoyed reading about the Clocktower Garden and seeing some of the plants you installed. That is one of my favorite spots in all of Rome. Out of curiosity, how do water everything? The last time I checked, there was no irrigation system on the hill….pretty ironic in that it used to be a water reservoir. Hopefully the City remedied the situation and provided much needed irrigation systems. Hope you’re doing well. Stop by and visit sometime, Layton

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    On Tue, May 7, 2019 at 7:34 AM Johntheplantman’s stories, musings, and gardening. wrote:

    > John P.Schulz posted: “The new clock tower garden is built on the theme > “As Time Goes By.” It has been dedicated to Anne Culpepper of Rome, Ga. > This is a smart phone-friendly guide to the plants involved. Something will > be in bloom every day of the year. The pictures for this a” >

    1. Thanks for the worry, Layton. I would never plant something like this without irrigation. We put it in in the fall before we planted. The city people have been most cooperative.

  2. We do not often see ‘new’ public gardens, especially in the East. (We have more space for them in the younger and more hastily developed towns of the West.) It must be nice to landscape with dogwoods. I grew them on the farm for years, and they do reasonably well near the coast, but they do not do well in the chaparral climates farther inland. We grew camellias too, as our third or fourth major crop. (I do not remember if we grew more pieris or camellias as the time.)

    1. Where are dogwoods native? The abound in the north Georgia woods and we have planted and cultivated them as part of our culture. While doing a project in Atlanta this spring, I enjoyed watching the northern progression of the dogwood blooms as they followed the weather patterns. Atlanta was covered with blooms and our more northern area followed a week and a half later.
      A few years ago a dogwood blight (or fungus) wiped out a lot of the trees in our area but the ones that survived seem to be doing fine.

      1. Until recently, the only dogwoods that we could get in nurseries were the same that are native to that region. Modern cultivars are Asian, or hybrids of American and Asian species. Our most popular dogwood, and one that I just planted six of, is a hybrid of the common dogwoods with the native Western dogwood. It is not quite as spectacular, but is more tolerant of the chaparral climate here.

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