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Proven Winners

Ceanothus Marie Bleu

Ceanothus ‘Marie Bleu’ (New Jersey Tea) I recently discovered this mesmerizing spring flowering shrub. Caenothus ‘Marie Bleu’ has masses of soft blue flowers that are followed by glossy red seed heads in late summer. It grows to 24” to 36” tall and prefers sun to part sun. ‘Marie Bleu’ is drought tolerant and flowers on…

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Supertunia Really Red

Supertunia ‘Really Red’ This petunia is a showboat, and I love it! The bold, REALLY red flowers are large and numerous. This is a new Supertunia from Proven Winners. I first saw it last winter from across an exhibit hall at a green industry trade. I just planted a sweep of ‘Really Red’ in front…

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Outstanding No-Fuss Annual

Isotoma axillaris ‘Beth’s Blue Procrastination will cost you with this beauty. ‘Beth’s Blue’ starflower tends to fly out of a garden center as soon as it is unloaded from the delivery truck. The mesmerizing lavender flowers dance gracefully atop lacy foliage. Beth’s Blue requires full sun and grows to 12” – 14”. No deadheading required.…

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A Bucket-List Must – Proven Winners Grand Garden Show

I think it is fair to say that you have NEVER experienced anything like Proven Winners Grand Garden Show hosted at The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan (unless you have already attended a previous show). This unique garden program kicks off Sunday, August 27 with a lavish hot and cold hors d’oeuvres reception and…

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Proven Winners Embraces Neonic-Free Plants

For the past few years I’ve had the opportunity to work with Proven Winners, a premier plant company that is committed to offering gardeners high performing annuals, perennials and shrubs. Their plants have passed extensive trials from coast to coast in the U.S. as well as in Germany and Japan. No surprise that I use…

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In a Squeeze? Use narrow plants!

Sometimes you need a skinny plant to slip into a tight spot. A specimen that has great ‘posture’ and completes the design puzzle. Here are a few woody plants, evergreen and deciduous, to consider when you are literally ‘between a rock and a hard place’: (pictured right Boxwood ‘Graham Blandy’, photo ncsu.edu) Evergreen Boxwood (Buxus…

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Proven Winners Annuals Shine in Evaluation Trials

The Massachusetts Horticultural Society manages a diverse plant evaluation program at The Gardens at Elm Bank in Wellesley, MA. As noted earlier in this newsletter, I was there for a fall conference which also provided a chance to walk through these spectacular trial beds. The New England Trial Garden was established in 1996 as a…

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Getting mophead Hydrangeas to bloom

I finally cracked the secret for having lush blue or pink mophead hydrangeas in Zones 5 and 6 – and I’m not talking silk flowers. I had to downsize my expectations – not about size or number of flowers but the mature height of the hydrangea. So instead of varieties like ‘Endless Summer’ and ‘Nikko…

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Spectacular Plants, including Angelonia and Blue Asters

Angelonia ANGELFACE ‘Perfectly Pink’. This new annual from Proven Winners (available in 2017) has me speechless. I’ve been trialing it this year to evaluate its blooming habit. I planted it in containers in May and it has bloomed nonstop – with zero deadheading. Even at the end of August, it still had robust blooms, despite…

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