Sunday, January 23, 2011

SIZE DOES MATTER - New Small Garden Choices


I had the opportunity of attending a Member and Volunteer meeting at the Wegerzyn Gardens in Dayton, Ohio last week.  As part of the Five Rivers Metro Parks, this non-profit foundation has supported horticultural and educational programs for 35 years.  Kent Phillips Studebaker Nurseries Ohio
Bobby Fluck - Volunteer and Master Gardener Kent Phillips was the speaker and introduced us to these new plants for 2011.  He represented Studebaker Nurseries, a wholesale grower in Ohio.
Patio gardens, and entry ways are just two places to build a small garden. And putting the right plant in the right place is particularly important in a limited space.  Mistakes can easily be seen if a shrub over steps its bounds or the continuous maintenance to keep a plant under control needs your attention every other weekend.
New plants come into the market each year.  Hybridizers and growers are always looking for the next ‘must have’ in the garden.  So I want to share with you some of new plants that will be an asset to our small gardens. 
CornusArctic215 This is a compact Red Twig Dogwood, called ‘Artic Fire’.  Growing to only 4’, this shrub is half the size of  other Dogwoods and has twice the branches.  “Baileyii” has blooms in late spring, and, of course, the showy stems all winter.
forsythia_showoff_big As the name suggests, this Forsythia, ‘Show Off’, will make a huge impact.  At full height of 3’ – 4’, “Show Off’ will work as a short hedge, or as a specimen in your landscape.  “Mindia” is one variety and needs full sun .  The dark green foliage allows this small shrub at least three seasons of interest.
‘Lil Kim’ Rose of Sharon is easy to grow, and is hardy in Zones 5-8.  What makes this  Hibiscus shrub stand out is the blossoms last three days and her blossoms are 3” across. Top height of 3’-4’, ‘Lil Kim’ can be grown in mixed containers or perennial beds.  This is a Proven Winner variety. Give this one full sun for maximum show.
 roseofsharon_lilkim_big Leptodermis oblonga - Missouri Botanical Garden This photo of Leptodermis oblonga was taken at the Missouri Botanical Gardens.  No common name has been given to this shrub, but that does not take away from the nice show of lavender blooms it gives from summer till frost. This plant can take full sun to part shade, is drought tolerant (once established), and no known insects or diseases plague it. It grows to  a 2’- 4’ mound and is hardy to Zones 5-7 .
Rosa 'Home Run' The” KnockOut” Rose family has gotten larger.  The ‘Home Run’, an offspring, is compact and tops out at about 2’.  This is a true red with bright yellow stamens. This variety is fragrant, and butterflies and hummingbirds will come to it.  I can see this in a container. Sweet! 
Thanks for visiting, and if your garden center does not have these varieties, have them contact kphillips@studebakernurseries.com.
As you know, my mantra is ‘Envision, Enrich, and Enjoy’, your garden.  Check out plant sizes before you plant, and by all means, sit back and enjoy!!
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