Plant List

Pearl’s garden is an ever-green garden, designed to be attractive year-round. Thus, at any time of the year, visitors to Pearl’s garden can appreciate his hard work and artistry. There is estimated to be over 400 individual plants in the Pearl Fryar Topiary Garden. Many of the plants were originally “throw aways”—shrubs discarded by nurseries because they were unattractive. Pearl salvaged the plants from compost piles and placed in his garden. Under his care, these plants flourished and became abstract topiary.

Unfortunately, many of the original nursery tags on the shrubs were lost. Consequently, Pearl is unclear of all the names of the plants he has in his garden. However, below is a partial list based on identifications done by horticulturalists Patricia Dehond and others.

Common Name
Oriental Arborvitae
Thuja orientalis
Large shrub/ small tree
Wintergreen Barberry
Berberis julianae
Medium shrub
Sasanqua camellia (various cultivars)
Camellia sasanqua
Large shrub
Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar
Cedrus atlantica ‘Glauca Pendula’
Large tree
Weeping Deodar Cedar
Cedrus deodara ‘Pendula’
Large tree
Flowering Dogwood
Cornus florida
Small tree
Eastern Red Cedar
Juniperus virginiana
Large tree
Japanese Cedar
Cryptomeria japonica
Large tree
Leyland Cypress
X Cupressocyparis leylandii
Large tree
Evergreen Euonymus3
Euonymus japonica ‘Ovatus aureus’ or ‘Viridi variegata’ and typical variety
Large shrub
Balsam Fir
Abies balsamea
Large tree
Fraser Fir2
Abies fraseri
Large tree
Pyracantha coccinea or koidzumii
Medium shrub
Tsuga species
Large tree
Chinese Holly
Ilex cornuta
Large shrub/ small tree
Burford Holly
Ilex cornuta ‘Burfordii’
Large shrub/ small tree
Japanese Holly varieties
Ilex crenata ‘Compacta’, ‘Sky Pencil’ and other cultivars
Small to medium shrub
Yaupon Holly
Ilex vomitoria
Small tree
Dwarf Yaupon Holly
Ilex vomitoria ‘Nana’, ‘Stokes Dwarf’ and/or 'Schillings Dwarf'
Small shrub
Weeping Yaupon Holly
Ilex vomitoria ‘Pendula’
Small tree
Columnar Yaupon Holly
Ilex vomitoria 'Will Fleming'
Small tree
Foster Holly
Ilex X attenuata ‘Fosteri’
Small tree
Savannah Holly
Ilex X attenuata ‘Savannah’
Small tree
Nellie R. Stevens Holly
Ilex X 'Nellie R. Stevens'
Small tree
Winter Honeysuckle
Lonicera fragrantissima
Large shrub
Chinese Juniper
Juniperus chinensis ‘Blue Vase’ and other cultivars
Green Columnar Juniper
Juniperus chinensis 'Hetzii Columnaris'
Small tree
Spartan Juniper
Juniperus chinensis 'Spartan'
Small tree
Hollywood Juniper
Juniperus chinensis 'Torulosa'
Large shrub/ small tree
Groundcover and shrubby-type Junipers
Juniperus conferta, J. davurica ‘Parsoni’, J. horizontalis and/or Juniperus sabina ‘Tamariscifolia’
Groundcover or small shrub
Variegated Hollywood juniper
Juniperus chinensis ‘Kaizuka’
Large shrub/ small tree
Silver Maple (pollarded)
Acer saccharinum
Large tree
Live Oak
Quercus virginiana
Large Tree
Hardy orange, Trifoliate orange
Poncirus trifoliata
Large shrub/ small tree
Holly Osmanthus (Tea-Olive)
Osmanthus heterophyllus (O. ilicifolia)
Large shrub
Eastern White Pine
Pinus strobus
Large tree
Loblolly Pine
Pinus taeda
Large tree
Shrubby Yew Podocarpus
Podocarpus macrophyllus 'Maki'
Medium shrub
Curly Privet
Ligustrum japonicum ‘Rotundifolium’
Small shrub
Baby’s-breath Spiraea
Spiraea thunbergii
Medium shrub
Norway Spruce
Picea abies
Large tree
Colorado Blue Spruce[2]
Picea pungens
Large tree
Taxus species
Medium shrub

Prepared by Patricia E. DeHond, Horticulturist

January 14, 1999; updated March 15, 1999

  1. Type: Groundcover = < 1’ tall; Small shrub = 1 - 4’ tall; Medium Shrub = 4 - 6’ tall; Large shrub = 6 - 12’ tall. Small tree = 12 - 35’ tall; Large tree = 35’ tall +
  2. Not “supposed” to grow in Bishopville, SC (at or beyond the limit of its natural range or suggested hardiness zone, therefore not recommended for planting in Zone 8)
  3. Disease problems (not recommended for planting)

Although he planted it in the past, Pearl no longer plants varieties of boxwood in his garden due to its susceptibility to pests and diseases.

Pearl does not water his plants or use pesticides or fertilizers in his garden. If a plant succumbs to disease or drought, Pearl removes it (or turns it into a bottle tree) and does not plant it again.

Pearl has planted relatively few flowering trees or shrubs. Exceptions are dogwood trees (Cornus florida), winter honeysuckle (Lonicera fragrantissima), baby’s breath spiraea (Spiraea thurnbergii), and different varieties of Camellia sasanqua and Camelia japonica. In 2008, a company donated crates of spring blooming bulbs to the garden. They are planted in the letters and driveway of the Garden with a Message. Other companies have sent crepe myrtles, hibiscus, daylilies, gladiolus, iris, dahlias, and camellias, which are now planted throughout the garden.