I remember as a young boy growing up with the Sears® Wish Book as my most read publication for pretty much the entire month of December. I would pour over the pages looking and dreaming and strategizing how I would talk my parents into just the right gifts.
These days, I still have a wish list, but my catalogs of choice have changed from toys to garden plants! Of course I’m always interested in conifers, but almost any dwarf or miniature plant has a chance of getting on my list. I also have a wish project. I am hoping to take a small section of my garden and turn it into a miniature garden railway. That way, I can satisfy the wishes of my inner-boy as well as the conifer loving old man!
Creating a great railway garden will take a lot of research and planning. One inspirational publication I’ve found is Garden Railways Magazine. I’m inspired by the folks that create the most realistic scale railways you could imagine. Many of these gardens utilize dwarf conifers to create the natural looking forests and other trees to fit the right scale for their trains.
One conifer that I think will work great in my railway garden is Cryptomeria japonica ‘Tansu.’ Rated at Zone 6, it won’t do for every garden, but here in the PNW, it will thrive. When young, it can be pruned and trained into a very natural looking forest tree with its small scale-like leaves in perfect proportion with a miniature railway. Left to grow naturally, ‘Tansu’ has a very compact, irregular growth habit, forming a rounded globe shape to a very broad pryramid with age. With its neat and tidy habit, it can be useful in a broad spectrum of garden styles.
Whether your desire is a garden railway, container plants as part of a patio garden or a great specimen for a rock garden, ‘Tansu’ is a premium choice that you need to put on your wish list too!
Thanks again to my friends at Iseli Nursery for the photo links!