131 posts in Plant Profiles

October 2007 Plant Profile: Chrysanthemum ‘Apricot’

Chrysanthemums or simply “mums” have always been frowned upon by savvy gardeners for being so common, disposable and overused. However, when sophisticated gardeners come across ‘Apricot’ in the Soest Garden, nothing else makes them fall to their knees begging to have this profusion of bloom and warm delicate color in their autumn landscape. Starting in mid-October, deep pink buds burst open like a fireworks display of peachy pink petals and continue through frost! 

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September 2007 Plant Profile: Sedum ‘Herbstfreude’

Known in the trade as Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’, it certainly lives up to that name come fall. This “tough as nails” perennial thrives in fully exposed sites, poor soil with very little irrigation once established. Another beautiful quality about this plant is its winter interest as the leaves fall and you’re left with the dried slim stems and clusters of flowers that persist until basal new growth commences in the spring. 

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August 2007 Plant Profile: Actaea simplex ‘Brunette’ and ‘Black Negligee’

Black-Leafed Snakeroot/Bugbane
Formerly called Cimicifuga, these sexy dark-leafed selections have taken the perennial garden world by storm with its elegant form and architectural habit in the garden.
The fine fern-like foliage emerges a deep green that ultimately deepen in color as the summer progresses and by late summer, strong erect stems catapult spikes of curvy, voluptuous, creamy-white blooms that have a soft fragrance. 

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July 2007 Plant Profile: Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue’ (Blue Sea Holly)

The sea hollies put on quite a show every June and July and this selection, by far, has been one of the most outstanding ever introduced to the Pacific Northwest. While many Eryngiums sulk and flower poorly in our mild and often wet Pacific Northwest conditions, ‘Sapphire Blue’ not only holds up under these conditions, it actually flowers prolifically in full blazing sun and dryish conditions once it is established making it quite drought tolerant and relatively carefree. 

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June 2007 Plant Profile: Yucca flaccida ‘Golden Sword’

An absolute standout year round, these highly architectural, evergreen plants light up the dark winter landscape with its steely gray green foliage and the dramatic fluorescent yellow stripe down each sword-like leaf.
Withstanding poor soils and incredibly drought tolerant once established, it also performs well in containers combined with other evergreen perennials such as Heuchera and red-leafed Euphorbia. It also looks stunning with the vertical spikes of blue Veronica come summer. 

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May 2007 Plant Profile: Romneya coulteri

Matilija Poppy
Probably the most asked about plant at this time of year with it’s crepe like white petals and bright yellow stamens, it almost a resembles a profusion of fried eggs sunny-side up!
With grey green foliage to set off the blooms, it makes a dramatic statement in the perennial bed as it towers up to 8 feet in height and continuously blooms for several weeks. 

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March 2007 Plant Profile: Pulmonaria ‘Roy Davidson’

Lungwort
Beds 2 and 3 are knitted together with this stunning early spring charmer! It is in full bloom this week (and has been since mid-March) with a profusion of baby blue flowers atop silver stippled grey green foliage
Family: Boraginaceae
Origin: Garden Origin
Height: 0.75 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: March-April
Bloom Color: Pale blue
Sun: Part to full shade
Water: Medium wet 

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February 2007 Plant Profile: Heuchera ‘Lime Rickey’

Heucheras have been all the rage in the past few years! With hundreds of new varieties and colors now available, it has become a staple foliage plant in perennial gardens and containers. With all the fancy-leaved varieties out there, one absolutely stood out during the winter with its bold, bright color and ruffled edges crystallized in frost. Heuchera ‘Lime Rickey’ was a color breakthrough a few years ago when it was first released being the brightest, most sought after plant on the nursery table. 

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August 2006 Plant Profile: Geranium ‘Rozanne’

One of the most exciting of hardy geraniums to be introduced in the last decade, Geranium ‘Rozanne’ has many of the qualities a great perennial plant should have. A single specimen can act as a billowy groundcover of maple-like, light green foliage smothered with two inch pale blue flowers with a lavender center all throughout the summer months. From our Blooms of Bressingham trials, I took a division in early spring and planted it close to the dry river rocks in Bed 6 where the soothing color represents a stream of cool running water. 

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July 2006 Plant Profile: Foeniculum vulgare ‘Purpurescens’

Traditionally used as an herb, bronze leaf fennel has been a favorite among perennial gardeners for many years because of its airy texture, soft smoky color, anise-aroma, the height it can reach making it a stand out in the garden.
The main drawback of this plant for many gardeners is its invasive potential in the landscape. When allowed to set seed, one will spend endless hours eradicating them if seedlings are allowed to establish because they have a long taproot (being in the carrot family). 

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