Usher in Spring 2013
Have We Got a Flower (or Two) for You!
Nothing adds charm to a home like flowers. Check out these spectacular bloomers and start imagining your environment surrounded by these bursts of color:
Blizzard series ivy geraniums are perennials with large, single, self-cleaning blossoms amassing in clusters. A vigorous grower, these lavender-blue blossoms will profusely cover the mounding and trailing foliage. Great for containers, deck boxes and window boxes, these ivy geraniums are also fantastic for dressing up that retaining wall. They will spill (up to 20 inches) and thrill even in the sunniest spots; Blizzard ivy geraniums are one of the most heat tolerant ivy geraniums.
Sun Parasol Mandevillas are natural climbers and will take full advantage of trellises, arbors, fences, and even other plants and trees, as long as they provide an avenue for climbing. In the absence of vertical support, Mandevillas will cascade, often up to 20 feet! The Giant series of Sun Parasol Mandevillas have larger blossoms and coarser growth than the original Sun Parasols but with the same exceptional garden performance and long-lasting flowers. Giant Carmine King is as red as red can be and will attract hummingbirds, butterflies and all manner of beneficial pollinators to its 5-inch flowers. It's truly amazing how quickly these annuals will grow in just one season!
Echinacea is a drought-tolerant, showy, blooming herbaceous perennial available in a plethora of forms. The entire plantits roots, stalks, blossoms and leavesare often used as a naturopathic, botanical remedy to boost the immune system and lessen the effects of the common cold and flu. Its flowers can be used as live garnishes on dinner plates, desserts and salads. Its blooms invite butterflies to visit and its seed heads are considered a treat by migrating and resident birds. Our Cheyenne Spirit Mix is an award winner, here in the U.S. and in Europe. This colorful collection blooms the very first year in vibrant hues. If you only have the space to plant one kind of perennial, this is the one; its blossoms make the most colorful and long-lasting bouquets, while in the garden Cheyenne Spirit is tough and resilient, surviving the most adverse weather and climatic conditions with grace.
Usher In Spring with These Flowering Plants!
The Crackling Fire series of Begonias is making begonias a household word. This begonia series puts an end to the difficult-to-grow characterization, being bred for its free-flowering nature, its tolerance to drought, its adaptability to varying light, its compact growth habit and its robust and incredibly beautiful, self-cleaning blossoms. What's not to like? And when it comes to white begonias, our Crackling Fire White Begonia plant should be at the top of your list of annualsthe burgundy stems, verdant foliage and pure white blossoms with frilly yellow centers combining for a simply stunning, over-the-top, display. And you hardly have to do a thing!
SunPatiens Impatiens put an end to phrases touting the annual beauty of impatiens as long as they are planted in shady gardens. These impatiens were bred to perform in full sun and sweltering heat, doing so admirably; they display more vigor and profuse flowering in cool and shady environments than all that have come before them. SunPatiens Electric Orange is an immensely versatile, compact variety, ideal for mixed containers, edges, borders, mass plantings, hanging basketsyou name it! Self-cleaning and completely immune to powdery mildew, you can look forward to flamboyant color, rain or shine.
Delosperma, more commonly called Ice Plant, can withstand and adapt to just about any soil or weather condition, except constantly wet feet, which is a great reason to grow it. Our Fire Spinner Ice Plant is something special indeed, combining all its positive, easy-to-grow attributes with color that can only be described as unreal. Starting at the center of each blossom is the yellow eye that is normal for most Delosperma, but that is where normalcy ends and fantastic begins. A gauzy, opaque white halo surrounds the yellow center, which is then surrounded by rings of radiant hot pink, magenta and bright burgundy before each petal ends in fiery orange. And then there's the fact they are drought and salt tolerant and deer do not find them palatable at all. Wow! Sounds like a dream come true, especially for someone whose green thumb hasn't fully developed yet. Use this gorgeous and carefree plant as a filler in containers, as a flowering ground cover or just about anywhere or any how you choose.
Yes, Spring Will ArriveSooner Than You Think!
You may have heard the myth about Lantanas having a less-than-pleasant fragrance. Let us put that to rest before we pass along all of its positive attributes. It is actually the leaves that some consider unpleasant, the somewhat citrusy fragrance being released when they have been crushed or stepped upon; in fact, this perennial plant is a butterfly, honeybee and hummingbird magnet! Would those nectar lovers flock to a plant that smelled bad? Carolina series Lantana's positives are many: they will lend a tropical ambiance wherever they are on display; they are exceptionally heat and drought tolerant and with their fantastic trailing habit will make a stunning ground cover when planted en masse and they adapt well to container life, looking nicely mounded on top while trailing up to 4 feet, in the case of Carolina Fireworks. This cultivar will be covered with masses of fiery-looking clusters in hot red and yellow.
Calibrachoas are the un-sticky answer to sticky petunias, the blossoms very similar to the pretty petunia, though smaller, and without the stickiness petunias are known for. Self-cleaning and flowering non-stop from April through the first frost, the colors are stunningly vibrant. Additionally, the blossoms and foliage will stand up much better under the stresses of adverse weather than the average petunia. SuperBells Lemon Slice was bred by Proven Winners® and will produce hundreds of lemony-yellow and white-starred blossoms throughout the course of its long growing season. You can almost smell the lemons!
Hydrangeas are an old plant, probably a favorite of your grandmother or great grandmother, but becoming a preferred choice once again as newer cultivars become available. A preference, too, of honeybees and butterflies, this perennial bush will normally bloom pink or blue, depending on the pH of your soil. You can plant hydrangeas and be surprised when they bloom, or you can buy an inexpensive pH tester to determine the acidity of your soil (greater than 7.0 will produce pink blossoms; less than 7.0 will produce blue). You can also adjust the pH of the soil your hydrangea is planted in to produce your preferred color, though that can take several years to accomplish. Our Limelight Hydrangea however, is not your grandma's hydrangea! Its flowers emerge uniquely chartreuse in color, turning pastel greenish-white before finally turning a vibrant pink in the fall. Amazingly drought tolerant and a profuse bloomer, growing up to 8 feet in height and breadth, you will want to ensure there is plenty of room to show off your own Limelight hydrangea.
All Heuchera are perennials grown for their foliage, but our Paprika Heuchera has some of the most vibrant and unusual coloration you will find on Coral Bells (the more common name for the Heuchera plant). Always covered with a kind of gauzy, white sheen, her larger-than-average leaves will change color from dark paprika-red to palest peach and every hue you can possibly imagine between those two extremes. Widely adaptable, you can grow Heuchera in full sun to full shade, in just about any kind of soil. It even prefers to dry out between waterings. Our Paprika Coral Bells will produce tiny bell-like, white blossoms in the spring, though they are quite insignificant when compared to the drastic coloration of the foliage. Having shallow roots, Heuchera is amenable to container growth and makes an exceptional filler and spiller; however, you can also plant this perennial as a fantastically brilliant ground cover, to drape over a retaining wall or to provide color when your perennials or annuals have taken a break or stopped blooming.
Our Ruby Mound Chrysanthemum is a Minnesota mum and a perennial, considered by some to be the best, true-red mum on the market today. Not orangey, with no yellow undertones, Ruby Mound is pure ruby-red, the rich coloration remaining throughout the entire season, not prone to fading as other red chrysanthemums are. This low-growing beauty is ideal for your cut flower arrangements, blooming in the fall, sometimes long after your other blooming plants have quit. You can grow chrysanthemums in containers or beds as long as they get more than 6 to 8 hours of sun daily. They are definitely sun lovers and few plants will rival them for incredible fall color. And you won't have to wait a year for the first blossoms; Ruby Mound mums will bloom profusely the first year, right up until the first killing frost.
If you love the Monarch butterfly, growing Asclepias, otherwise known as Milkweed or Butterfly Weed, is a must. No, it is not a weed, though it may grow like one, which is a good thing. It is also the only plant material the Monarch caterpillar can thrive on, while it is used by both the Queen and Monarch butterflies to lay their eggs. Deer proof, non-invasive and low-maintenance, our Tuberosa Asclepias also does not produce the signature milky-white sap as others of this genus, making it ideal for your cut arrangements; the blossoms are amazingly long lasting in the vase. Use this bright and tall perennial in the center of a round butterfly garden or along the back border where its considerable height and bright green foliage will provide a nice backdrop to lower growing bloomers. You don't have to worry about the deer; they don't care for Butterfly Weed; however, you can look forward to Swallowtails and other butterflies, honeybees and hummingbirds being regular visitors.