Perennials Under the MicroscopeI wanted to highlight a few perennials that are just phenomenal in my opinion.First Stokesia ‘Peachies Pick’, This plant is actually named after a woman named Peachy who made the selection. The plant is actually a beautiful blueish purple and does a height of about 18” so it never becomes overwhelming in the garden. The plant blooms in mass with flowers about 2” across. It is not uncommon to see 50 blooms on a two or three year old plant at one time. Blooms from July1 through the end of August. It looks like they will even go into September this year.Buddleia ‘Pink Delight’ is a butterfly Bush with flowers up to 14” long. In my opinion it is the best cultivar of all the butterfly bushes based on the compact nature of the flowers and the size. If bigger is better this is it!!! Straight pink cone shape flower clusters as the name implies. Mulch this plant with leaf litter for the winter and pull back April 1. Do not use bark mulch because it will keep the plant too wet for the winter. The leaf mulch will breathe much better. Plant blooms from mid June or July – September.Echinacea ‘Tiki Torch’ is the best of all the new Echinacea introductions in the past 5 years. Finally a robust orange coneflower that does not fade to some shade of purple or pink after it starts blooming. Plant does 36” tall is true orange with flowers 5” across. This plant has performed well in the Blue River Nursery trial gardens, very well!Pulmonaria ‘Trevi Fountain’ Is a wonderful plant for full to part shade locations. Plant blooms for a month and a half from April 1 to mid May when you start getting consistently warm temperatures. These flowers are some of the deepest blue I have seen in the perennial world in zone 5.Ceratostigma ‘Blue Plumbago’ has green leaves with electric blue flowers. Plant blooms from July 15 to October 1st or whenever the frost comes. Foliage turns red from green as the season goes on from July. This is kind of a neat attribute when combined with the blue flowers. Acer rubrum ‘Sun Valley’ is a shade tree that has really got our attention. The plant has smaller leaves than other cultivars of Red Maple. It is a seedless cultivar therefore not producing all the helicopter like seed heads that are messy. Fall color is an outstanding mix of reds and oranges. Until the next blog post.
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