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No, no, nandina

Have you ever let an opportunity to offer important information slip by without speaking up? I recently did. A close friend who lives in Williamsburg asked me when to prune some newly planted hydrangeas. I had just written about pruning hydrangeas, so I told her I would send her the information.

Her next statement took me by surprise. She said, “The voles are eating the roots of my new nandina. What should I do?” I caught my breath, opened my mouth, and just then, some other friends walked up, talking about something else, and the moment for teaching passed.

My friend is a novice gardener, and I didn’t want to discourage her newfound interest in shrubs, but nandina isn’t the best shrub to plant.

Nandina domestica, commonly called sacred or heavenly bamboo, is a member of the Barberry family. Its common name derives from its upright growing habit and the shape of its leaves, which resemble those of bamboo. Nandina is a semi-evergreen to evergreen, multi-stemmed shrub that grow...

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