2011 Newsletter

News You Can Use

Volume 10, Issue 2

May 2011

 

New Annuals & Perennials

Salvia argentea "Silver Sage‟

Fuzzy leaves, large enough (and soft enough) to be a polar bear‟s pillow, are the eye popping feature of this unusal salvia. Even the leaves of the tiny seedlings displayed enough downy fluff to comfort a sleeping mouse. As the perfect contrast to any flowering plant, Silver Sage compliments any neighbor in the garden. A spike of yellow flowers, rare in the blue world of Salvia blooms, adds golden interest the second year.

Stokesia laevis "Klaus Jelitto‟

The largest of the Stokes Aster‟s flowers is powder blue and grows to a stunning 4-5" round. The neat mounds of soft feathery flowers appear to be a cozy futon for the weary gardener. This handsome summer bloomer is named after the famed German plantsman and seed expert.

Tradescantia "Sweet Kate‟

Spiderwort is a beloved native roadside flower known for improving one‟s attitude when changing a flat tire on a country road in the early summer. Sweet Kate is a form that lives up to her name with compact golden 12" grasslike foliage supporting clusters of azure blooms. This spiderwort will improve anyone‟ s attitude anytime.

Knautia "Mars Midget‟

We were sold on this gem when we saw it blooming at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks in November. It has already started to flower in the greenhouse. Now that‟s a long blooming period! Pink stamens on a sphere of red petals give this flower the appearance of a fluorescent Martian dust ball. This compact, bushy plant grows to 16" tall and is popular with butterflies.

Leucanthemum "Crazy Daisy‟

Another victim of the "we must change the Botanical name to confuse garden enthusiasts" trend, the Shasta Daisy has numerous forms in a pretty format. If you are amused by the concept of a bad hair day, this shasta is for you. The two inch pure white flowers sport petals that look like birds‟ feathers on a very windy day. In spite of needing a strong hairspray, these bold flowers make an outstanding show in the garden.

Malva sylvestris "Zebrina‟

If you like hollyhocks and hibiscus, this long blooming relative was made for you. Heat and drought tolerant (a handy trait after last summer), this gem continues to produce 2" lavender -with-purple-vein flowers through November. Can you guess in which parking lot garden these were flowering in late fall last year?

 

Annuals

Salvia "Mystic Spires‟

Don E, Eureka‟s beloved parks restoration specialist, planted an annual Salvia last year that made us want to linger longer at the stop sign on Planer Hill. Mystic Spires acted like a small shrub by growing to two feet tall and almost as wide. It most generously endowed itself with spikes of deep blue blooms that didn‟t seem to quit until the snow flew. As another of Don E‟s mystery plants, no one seemed to know what it was. Tina did her homework, found it and if our favorite specialist doesn‟t make off with them, you may have a Mystic Spire in your garden, too.

Oxalis siliquosa "Sunset Velvet‟

Even if I had not seen this plant at the Ozark Botanical Garden Plant Sale, I might have bought it for its cool name, siliquosa. Could any of you Latin scholars out there tell us what that wonderful word means? When you see the orange foliage & yellow flowers on this gem, you won‟t care whether it has a name or not. This shamrock practically glows and is one clover I wouldn‟t mind growing all over the yard or garden.

Pelargonium hortorum "Calliope Dark Red‟

Did you know that a geranium is really a pelargonium? Did you know that Calliope Dark Red is the deepest red available in Pelargonium history? Does it keep you awake at night? It‟s ok, it‟s just a geranium.

Ptilotus exaltatus "Joey‟

Since no normal human can pronounce "Pt", this neat new annual is merely referred to as Joey. A Australian native, Joey has been described as cotton candy on a stick, or stalk, or stem. Downy pink flowers appear on young plants and seem to never go away. This one new annual may account for increased attendance at county fairs all over the nation. We hope you will hunger for Joey in your garden.

Profusion Zinnia, "Double Fire‟ and "Double Gold‟

Double your color and your pleasure with the newest cultivars in the Profusion series. Profusion zinnias are classified as landscape zinnias

which simply means they are way more useful than other zinnias. Growing to a tight mound about one foot tall and wide, profusions are deer resistant flowering machines. They are miraculously mildew free and require no maintenance during their showy existence. And now they come in a nifty double form- twice the color and twice the fun.

Perennials

Agastache "Mint Rose‟

The newest invocation of the Agastache Hall of Fame, Mint Rose joins acclaimed members Navajo Sunset, Golden Jubilee, Apricot Sprite, Heather Queen, Apache Sunset and Lavender Haze. Anise scented leaves and a continuous flowering disposition in a deer resisting, drought busting format made this heat loving perennial an easy choice for persnickety judges.

Tricyrtis hirta Japanese Toad Lily

For those gardeners that dislike the passing of flowering season in the fall, the Toad Lily is the perfect perennial. Two foot tall gracefully arched stems hold lance shape leaves. Each leaf of this foliage ladder sports a delicate orchid-like flower, lightly spotted and exquisite in form. One of the last perennials to flower in the fall, the Toad Lily will light up a shady spot in the garden. Oh, and they are deer resistant!

Echinacea "Pow Wow Wild Berry‟

Someone in the Marketing Department had too much cappuccino when they named this new coneflower. We might have simply called this "a great new coneflower.‟ Compact size and a brilliant color distinguish Wild Berry from other coneflowers. Like other coneflowers this one is happy with plenty of sun. There are a couple of other new coneflowers, too. Come see for yourself.

Gaillardia "Mesa Yellow‟

A little bit of sun was injected into every petal of Mesa Yellow Blanket Flower. The brilliant mound of flowers contrast beautifully with dark fluffy foliage. These pinwheel flowers are a gardeners‟ dream, tolerating poor soils, scorching heat and bone dry conditions. However, they perform best if grown on the planet earth.

© Bear Creek Nursery & Landscaping

2798 Highway 23 North, Eureka Springs, Arkansas 72631

(479) 253-7466

bearcreeknursery@yahoo.com »˜« www.bearcreeknursery.net

New Vines & Shrubs

A Very Special Vine

Watson: Native Plants for $800, please.

Alex: This native American relative of the trumpet vine has leaves that turn purple in winter while tolerating temperatures below minus 15 degrees, has orange or yellow flowers in the mid spring, behaves in a manner becoming of a popular, non -invasive evergreen vine and grows on a shed behind an ice cream shop in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

Watson: What is Bignonia capreolata?

Alex: Could you please provide the common name?

Watson: What is Tangerine Beauty Cross Vine?

Alex: That is correct, your turn again.

Lonicera "Dropmore Scarlet‟

This brilliant red flowering form of the native honeysuckle has been requested by savvy gardeners throughout the years. A few years ago, when told we did not have the Dropmore Scarlet, a caller simply asked "Why Not?" Sufficiently humbled, I vowed to carry the brilliant blooming, fast growing (but not invasive), drought resistant climbing honeysuckle. This strong growing native vine will surely humble you and the trellis upon which it grows.

Buddleia "Orange Sceptre‟

Speaking of large fuzzy leaves, Orange Sceptre Butterfly Bush amuses the masses with broad fuzzy leaves unlike any seen on a butterfly bush. This bushy shrub has acted like a perennial these last two cold winters, leaping from the ground in the heat of late spring.

Its undeniably fabulous feature is tight clusters of orange flowers at the tips of new growth. If thick fuzzy leaves topped with orange flower spires don‟t thrill ones senses, one needs to take up a more monochromatic hobby. Brought to you by Dr. Jon Linstrom‟s breeding program at the University of Arkansas.

Knock Out Rose "Sunny‟

The yellow form of the popular Knock Out Roses lives up to its name with sunny yellow single blossoms. For those of you who may have been on a tropical island for a few years, Knock Out Roses are the neatest invention since the napkin. Easy maintenance, disease resistance and a potential for never ending flowers awaits you and your garden.

Open 7 days a week through June 19th, M-Sat 9--5, Sun 11-4

10th Anniversary Open House
May 15-21st

Help us celebrate 10 years of gardening bliss at an anniversary party. This will be a weeklong celebration of trees, shrubs, plants, vegetables and garden accessories. Come for the healthy plants, come for the pottery, come for the 10th Anniversary Specials or just come to visit. See you at our ten year old Bear.

Disclaimer

Since we have a bad habit of choosing, writing and raving about plants that are sold out before the ink dries on the newsletter, you are hereby requested to come to the Bear immediately and try to find these and other flowering gems and take them home with you. Your garden will love you for it.

Call 479-253-7466 for more information on any of the new introductions reviewed in this article.
For the PDF version of this article, click here

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