Can you give me some advice for nandinas? I planted two mahonia fortunei which didn't do well so now I'm thinking of nandinas, but I wanted something smaller. I understand there's a nandina cultivar called Gulf Stream. The area gets daytime shade and afternoon/evening sun. Can you suggest something? I don't know why the two mahonia plants didn't make it. I watered per directions, but they are turning brown and the leaves are dropping. Any help would be appreciated.
Thank you, Jean I.
The issue with the Chinese mahonias may be too much water (depending on how you are watering) or afternoon sun. These shrubs prefer morning sun.
Nandinas are more sun tolerant and should be a good choice. You will see several cultivars available at your local nurseries. A number of dwarf cultivars are available these days, such as Gulf Stream, Harbour Dwarf, Flirt and others. Choose one that has the look and will be the desired size (check the tag on the plant).
Consumer Horticulture Specialist
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture