What’s in a Name?

Our names were given to us at birth, and there is nothing much we can do about it, except have our names legally changed. That does nothing to say what we are. For instance, I have a friend whose name is Peewee, I’ll call his last name Smith. He’s a great guy and would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it. He’s a family man with a wife and children.

There was another man whose name was Peewee Gaskins. He was executed for murder. He is reported to have murdered over 40 people in South Carolina. Both of these men have nothing in common, except they were somewhat shorter than a man’s average height. The common denominator of these 2 men is their physical shortness, nothing more.

There are other names that describe status in life, Surgeon Doctor Wackum, Nurse Stickum, General Halftrack, Senator Smith and Congressman Dolittle etc. However, these names don’t describe how they appear, or how well they will function in life.

I’ve been connected with the Green Industry for over 45 years, and drawn my share of landscape designs. Now with that said, I want to ask the reader “what’s in a name?” A name should be descriptive, especially when dealing with plants.

What is the plant “Ilex crenata” in the Family Aquifoliaceae ? Does the average person on the street know? Do Mr. and Mrs. Jones who want to landscape their yard know? I think not.

There is a system of nomenclature that I have devised that simply describes plants as to their common name, manageable height, and manageable width and sunlight requirements. For instance:

Encore Azalea ‘Autumn Amethyst’ 4’x4’

autumn amethyst

The Encore Azalea ‘Autumn Amethyst’ will grow to 4 feet tall and 4 feet wide in sunlight or part shade. The first 4’ is the height and the second 4’ is the width. The circle and the shaded circle describe the light conditions the plant requires. The circle and the shaded circle describe the light conditions the plant requires. It needs either Full Sun or Part Sun. The third item is the thumbnail picture (see above) of the shrub which shows the predominate color characteristic of the plant.

For information about Landscape Design Made Easy to be taught at Midlands Technical College, please contact Ron Cowart, cowartlandscapeconsulting@gmail.com


The next course Ron Cowart is teaching @ the N. E. Campus of Midlands Tech is Soil Management.
It starts 4.13.2017 & ends 6.1.2017.
We meet Thursday evenings from 6 to 9.
The course costs $179 & you can register over the phone by calling 803.732.0432, or you can register online at: https://mtconline.midlandstech.edu/CeClassCatalog/cecatalogsearch?CourseName=CEHOR-520.
Course description: Learn about soils and plant nutrition. Emphasis will be placed on physical and chemical properties, water, organic matter, and micro-organisms in soils. Materials and methods for supplying nutrients to horticulture plants are also discussed.
$179 divided by 24 hours of instruction equals a cost of ~$7.50/hr.— a real bargain for an educational course.
Please consider joining us!!
Author: Ron Cowart