Spring 2015


The Betulia Begonias

BEG Betulia Bright Pink 6
Begonia ‘Betulia Bright Pink’

We sell two kinds of Rieger Begonias: old school and new school. Old-school versions are the classic ‘Red Baron’, ‘Netja’, and ‘Nadine’ varieties that you know from way back—they have big flowers on big plants that drape. This review isn’t about those Riegers.

Rather, we are going to talk about the new school version: the Betulia series. Scaled down and straightened up, these Riegers sit halfway in-between the Wax and the Rieger Begonias in their looks. They have a smaller and tighter habit with semi-double flowers, smaller but more generous. They don’t drape and they don’t hang like their old school cousins. These Riegers are better suited for projects where size does matter, like combos, boxes, and landscape plantings. As a result, they fit into more decor work you find in both landscapes and interiorscapes.


Frizzle Sizzle Pansies

PAN Frizzle Sizzle Mix 1
An eye-catching mix of ruffled Frizzle Sizzle Pansies

Ruffled Pansies are well loved and popular in England. British gardeners value the extra colors in the flower faces and the ruffled petticoat of petals. It’s not a surprise that a nation of avid gardeners would adopt a Pansy as unique as the Frizzle Sizzle series.

Over here in America, solid colors dominate Pansy sales to the trade but the same is not true for garden centers and public works personnel. Landscapes are often vistas viewed far-off, whereas home gardens and display beds usually reflect their gardeners’ personal taste up close. Diversity sells on the retail bench and in public parks, so a distinctive, unusual Pansy rises above the commodity type. Let’s take a look at what makes up the Frizzle Sizzles and how they bring their sizzle to early spring.


Extra Tall Angelonias

ANG Angelface Super White 1
Angelonia ‘Angelface Super White’ rises 30–36 inches above the ground

We’ve added two extra tall Angelonias to our program for next spring. While the standard varieties might grow about 18 inches, Angelonia ‘Angelface Super Blue’ and ‘Angelface Super White’ both rise about 30 to 36 inches above the ground. For context, this is the same height we expect from Cleome ‘Senorita Blanca’ or Coleus ‘Wasabi’: waist-high.

These two cultivars not only grow higher but also have thicker stems and a generally bushier habit. Each plant is good for filling a vertical space with a sense of generous color. As a result, we can move that popular Snapdragon look into places where we don’t normally see Angelonia.


Golden Groundcovers

ALT True Yellow 1Golden groundcovers act as living mulch that lights up the landscape

As living mulch, groundcovers do the same jobs that traditional mulch performs—they keep the garden tidy, protect the soil, and suppress weeds. With that in mind, we sell three groundcovers that pull off an additional effect that traditional mulch cannot achieve: the golden glow. You might expect us to sell only one variety, but we offer three versions because each cultivar delivers the gold in a different way—straight, bushy, or trailing.


Straight-Up Poinsettias

 POI Straight Up 8
Straight-Up Poinsettias—big holiday drama with heirloom appeal

Styles and tastes evolve, and our Poinsettias have done the same. Newer cultivars grow lower and branch more freely, so they create a wider, rounder plant that is more popular today. This modern look reflects the Poinsettia’s movement onto tabletops and into centerpiece displays. Lower arrangements allow guests to see over the plants and across the table to converse with other party guests, for example.

More centerpiece work does not mean that floor-driven displays have gone away at all. They are still very much a part of public presentations where we need big holiday drama. Consider the Poinsettias we use for flanking the fireplace, surrounding the Christmas tree in a corporate lobby, lining church railings, or creating a festive environment in a big retail space.