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  • New Flowers for Containers and Flowerbeds

    What’s New?

    Part of the fun of nursery shopping is seeing what’s new. Each visit we hope you’ll see something that catches your eye, something we haven’t grown before. Armstrong Garden Centers’ growers and buyers are constantly searching out what’s new. We have special agreements with plant breeders to be able to offer new plants before other garden retailers. We even offer plants exclusive to Armstrong.

    New Annual for Winter and Early Spring Planting

    Belarina primroses are unique and special. Each compact plant forms a rosette of leaves that cossets a bouquet of double, ruffled flowers—each plant looking like a Victorian nosegay. The fragrance is lovely and the colors luscious. Choose from sherbet shades of buttermilk, cream, icy pink or saturated hues of cobalt blue, Valentine red or buttercup.

    New Annuals for Spring and Summer Planting

    The lowly gomphrena has gone through some major changes and ‘Pink Zazzle’ gomphrena is pretty sensational. It has very large blooms of bright, hot pink on compact, mounding plants. If pizazz is what you’re after, this plant’s for you. The flowers are great for cutting, and the plants really take the heat. Another plus: once established, plants are low-water gems.

    If you’re looking to cause a little commotion in a mixed planter or flower border then novelty petunia ‘Cha-Ching Cherry’ is the one for you. The velvety red flowers are pinstriped with bold white, with gold centers striping into the white. Hard to describe, and just as hard to turn away from. ‘Cha-Ching Cherry’ is a must for baskets and pots.

     

    ‘Variegated Baby Purple’ petunia is a new addition to the trailing ‘Surfinia’ series. This group of petunias is perfect to spill out of window boxes, baskets and containers. It’s great in the ground, too—it’ll cover a lot of territory. With ‘Variegated Baby Purple,’ the attraction is the cream and green
    foliage with the contrasting dark purple flowers. What a combination.

    Celosia ‘Intenz’ is different from other celosias. Instead of feathery flowers in red, orange and yellow, these blooms are bold purple. ‘Intenz’ can take the heat and sun. Plants reach 18-inches tall and 12-inches wide.


    It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a new lobelia, that stalwart of mixed containers and flowerbed borders. Lobelia ‘Hot Springs’ is worth the wait. Extra-large flowers absolutely cover very full mounds reaching 14-inches tall and 16-inches wide. The colors are strong and clean: dark blue, lavender pink, white and sky blue.

     

    There really hasn’t been a good reason to grow annual cupheas until now. Cuphea ‘Sriracha’ is a little jewel and something really different. Tidy, mounding plants look like no others. Vibrant colors of pink, rose and violet cover 15-inch mounds. Bees and butterflies love ‘Sriracha.’

    There a real trend to rely on leaf color for garden color. Alternanthera ‘Red Thread’ adds to this niche of plants. A single plant in a glazed pot is sensational, but use ‘Red Thread’ for borders and mixed plantings—in the ground or in pots. The color intense red color is terrific. Forms a 12-inch high and 18-inch mound.

     

    Confetti Gardens are not new plants per se, but a new way of planting. Three or more seeds are combined into a seed “pellet” with the result being a completed and complementary planting. Great plant combos ready for pots, containers, baskets and flower beds. A designer with a great eye for texture and color has done the work for you. Sit back and admire.

    New Perennials for Spring and Summer Planting

    ‘Calliope’ geraniums are a brand new breed: a cross between zonals and ivies. These “interspecifics” have the best of both geraniums: huge, full flowers, rich, glossy leaves, and a mounding, trailing habit. They’re low-water too, once established. You have four color choices: hot pink, burgundy, dark red and lavender rose.

     

    It’s a bit of a mystery why pentases (that’s plural for pentas) are not more widely grown in California. These bedding plants can really take our heat, bloom almost year round in temperate climates and are very colorful. Pentas ‘Graffiti’ series has compact plants with large flower clusters. (The common name, star clusters, is rarely used, but describes the flowers.) Colors range from bright red through white, pink, lipstick, rose and violet. Pentas is a perennial, but can be grown as an annual in cold climates.

    Waterwise lantana should be a staple of California home garden flower borders. They certainly are ubiquitous freeway plants. But before you turn up your nose, consider these little gems: lantana ‘Little Lucky’ series. Bred to be just a foot tall and wide, these lantanas won’t take over the garden. You’ll get non-stop color (red, gold, peach, cream) through the hottest summers. Lantanas are well worth growing as annuals in cold-winter California areas.


    See more articles about: Seasonal Decorating, Container Gardening, Plant Guides