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Re: New or Tried and True?
  • Subject: Re: New or Tried and True?
  • From: Catharine Carpenter <cathycrc@comcast.net>
  • Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 16:33:58 -0600

I wish we could follow your example here in our city flower beds, but our winters and heavy clay soils doom your choices. Anyone out there have any ideas for west central IL?
Cathy, west central IL, z5b

On Dec 18, 2010, at 12:14 PM, Pam Evans wrote:

Tried & true works for me. And using more xeriscape stuff all the time. Something croaks, it gets replaced w/ a rosemary shrub, a regular purple coneflower or a salvia of an appropriate size to fill the hole. I'm going to re-do the flower bed in the Kemp city park in March w/ all xeriscape stuff. rosemary, cenizo, salvias, 'Powis Castle' artemisia & lavenders. Another gal is going to get the rocks and gravel & I'm supplying the plants and doing the planting (she has bad knees & no health insurance) No more dead flower bed in the center of town. The mayor is delighted of course. Plus all that stuff is evergreen so will look good 12 months of the year.

On Sat, Dec 18, 2010 at 11:06 AM, Daryl <dp2413@comcast.net> wrote:

I found that the Chicago-bred coneflowers never went dormant for me, and were then killed when the temps dropped abruptly into the teens, as they do
here. Are you trying them, or Saul's? Saul's seem to do better here -
probably because they're breeding and growing them here in the HHH south.

I was working Customer Service for Van Bloem's during the 'Limerock Ruby'
fiasco. I can't tell you how much we refunded on that one the year we
carried it. It quickly left the catalog, as you can imagine. I'd gotten a
sample at a GWA meet the year before. Too bad nobody asked me. :-(

One nice thing about being a member of the Garden Writer's Association is getting plant samples before they hit the catalogs. I've found some things that I absolutely rave about to my readers, but then there are those that are absolute duds in my climate, like the CBG coneflowers. Sometimes I'm so entranced by a plant that I've purchased additional plants the next year, or two or three if the sample fails, but I'm learning now to trust my instincts rather than to waste money. And frankly, if it doesn't like our climate, my
readers aren't going to be able to grow it, either.


----- Original Message ----- From: "andreah" <andreah@hargray.com>
To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
Sent: Saturday, December 18, 2010 11:30 AM
Subject: RE: [CHAT] New or Tried and True?

I'm really leaning towards the tried and true. I LOVE LOVE LOVE those new
Echinacea, however every single one I've ever tried has died except, of course the original purple cone flower. Those, I can't divide fast enough.

I tried the Limerock ruby back when it came out. It died. So, I am
with what I know will do here now. I don't want to spend the money and I
want my plants to thrive!

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net] On
Of Daryl
Sent: Saturday, December 18, 2010 11:20 AM
To: gardenchat
Subject: [CHAT] New or Tried and True?

I was reading a trade article and the interviewee was asked what he
some of the new perennials. He replied, " Coreopsis 'Crhme Brulee,' and 'Limerock Ruby': These were hot, hot plants five years ago. Everybody had
have them. Now, they're like the lepers of the perennial community."

I like that phrase, "the lepers of the perennial community." It fits. The
thing good about some plants, like 'Limerock Ruby', is that they make way
something else to kill.

I've seen so many plants come and go in my previous hort-head life that I
prefer to grow the tried and true. If they're newer plants, I want them
in my climate. I don't care whether a plant does great in Chicago. I want
tested at UGA. Even though UGA is a bit warmer in winter than my area, and
soil is better, and there are plenty of garden slaves (hort students) to
care of the beds and to weed and water, at least it's humid - with
hot days and many hot nights. If a plant thrives there, it's likely to
in my garden.

What do you think? Are you still wanting plants that are on the cutting
or do you prefer to save the money and the aggravation?


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Pam Evans
Kemp TX
zone 8A

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