Articles in Category: Plant of the Week

Ribes odoratum 'Crandall'

on Wednesday, 27 February 2019. Posted in Plant of the Week, Berries Attract Wildlife, Fragrant Blooms, Attracts Pollinators, Fall Color, Shade Plants, Edible, Shrubs, Drought Tolerant, Flowering Plants

'Crandall' Black Currant

ribes crandall

Here is a stellar plant that is beautiful, as well as edible and good for the birds.  This Black Currant is woefully under utilized, perhaps people haven't eaten a currant before or not visited the nursery when they are in bloom.  But come visit in April and you will see a drift of them planted in part shade in our drought tolerant display garden.    Ideally close enough to the rock pile for little hands to pick the fruit when they ripen in summer.  And beckoning you for a closer look with their clove scented, yellow blooms.  Appealing to hummingbirds and butterflies, the flowers develop into black, round fruit that are tart/sweet with a more mild currant flavor and especially high in Vitamin C.  My daughter loves to pick them fresh but they can be made into preserves or baked goods or dried.   Then the fall brings out gorgeous red fall color.  Most currants would appreciate a spot out of extreme heat but will tolerate full sun with good water.  Part shade or morning sun is ideal.  They will get 4-5' tall and wide.  Currants can be drought tolerant once established and do best in a well-draining but compost-rich soil.  They can be a great addition to a mixed use garden- full of edible and ornamental power!

Salvia x 'Heatwave'

on Thursday, 04 June 2015. Posted in Plant of the Week, Attracts Pollinators, Perennial, Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant, Flowering Plants

'Heatwave' Series of Autumn Sage Hybrids

HeatwaveSo many compliments to give this autumn sage hybrid! We planted the 'Blaze' variety because I like all flowers that get close to true red. No pinks. Bonni may beg to differ on if this is true red, but most days it is.

 One of the benefits of the 'Heatwave' series, which was developed in Australia, is that they hold their color through the summer and don't fade. We have certainly found this to be true. The vibrant red blooms first appear in May and will continue until frost. It is extremely heat and drought tolerant, but takes regular water as well if given good drainage. Hummingbirds visit it every morning and evening!

The foliage, like most varieties of Autumn Sage, is spicy and fragrant, so deer tend to leave it alone. Plants are mostly evergreen in mild winters, but will drop most of their foliage in a cold year. We only cut it back to clean it up in mid-March. The first summer it was planted it quickly filled out to 2' tall by 2-1/2' wide. This perennial should be in every garden!