Plant of the Week: Season 6

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Plant of the Week: Season 6


Episode 601:Blue Chip Butterfly BushButterfly Bush

Common Name: Blue Chip Butterfly Bush

Scientific Name: Buddleia davidii ‘Blue Chip’

Dr. Dennis Werner, director of the JC Raulston Arboretum at NC State University and a plant breeder in the NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, developed the new butterfly bush, or buddleia.

Flowers:
medium blue
purple
continuous bloomer, no need to deadhead

Growth habit:
dense and compact
2-3ft. in height and width

Culture:
full sun, well-drained soil

Other:
'Blue Chip' is the first of what Werner anticipates will be a number of butterfly bushes developed as part of a trademarked series of plants called Lo and Behold. All the Lo and Behold buddleia will be low, compact plants that produce few seeds. They should be available to gardeners over the next several years.

Episode 602: Black-eyed SusanBlack-eyed Susan

Common Name: Black-eyed Susan

Scientific Name: Rudbeckia hirta ‘Indian Summer’

Flowers:              
mid summer to first frost
yellow with deep brown center
4 to 6 inches in width

Growth habit:        
upright
no flopping or staking
1 to 3ft. tall 

Culture:
full sun

Other:                  
deadhead spent flowers to encourage new flowers
use in mixed border, perennial borders

Episode 603: Stokes AsterStokes Aster

Common Name: Stokes Aster

Scientific Name: Stokesia laevis

Type:
herbaceous perennial, native to SE region

Flowers:
purple, lavender
white
late May through end of summer                 

Growth habit:
2-4ft. tall
can flop, may need to support            

Culture:
full sun
well drained soil

Other:
use in mixed borders, perennial borders

Episode 604: PeregrinaPeregrina

Common Name: Peregrina

Scientific Name: Jatropha integerrima

Type:
tropical evergreen shrub, native to Cuba

Flowers:
scarlet, red
clustered

Foliage:
The leaves are extremely variable; they may be entire and elliptic or oval, or they may be fiddle shaped, or they may have three sharp pointed lobes.

Hardiness:
Zone 10, will not grow as a perennial in NC, must be
brought in and grown as a houseplant during Winter

Culture:
full sun, but will tolerate some shade

Other:
attracts hummingbirds
use in mixed borders

Episode 605: Alice Du Pont MandevillaMandevilla

Common Name: Alice Du Pont Mandevilla

Scientific Name: Mandevilla splendens  ‘Alice Du Pont’

Type:
tropical vine                                     

Flowers:              
large, pink flowers         

Foliage:               
thick, green leaves
glossy                                              

Culture:                
full sun (at least 6 hours a day for best flower)

Other:                  
fertilize every two weeks
great in a container with a trellis for support
provides good color for an arbor
named after the wife of Pierre DuPont, creator of the celebrated Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania.

Episode 606: Bangkok RoseBangkok Rose

Common Name: Bangkok Rose

Scientific Name: Mussaenda erythrophylla

Type:
shrub
tropical                           

Flowers:
small, yellow

Bracts:
coral (often mistaken for the flower)                                    

Growth:
3-7ft, as an annual in NC
can grow as tall as 8ft. in its native region                                   

Culture:
full sun, well-drained soil

Other:
use in mixed border or container

Episode 607: Japanese AsterAster

Common Name: Double/False Japanese Aster

Scientific Name: Kalimeris pinnatifida

Type:         
herbaceous perennial

Flowers:              
small white double flower
Mid to late May until frost

Foliage:
small, feather-like leaves
fine texture                                                                    

Growth:               
2-3 ft. tall                                      

Culture:
full sun, but does tolerate part shade            

Other:
drought tolerant  
no deadheading required
tough plant, great performer in the garden

Episode 608: HostaHosta

Common Name: Hosta

Scientific Name: Hosta sp.

Type: herbaceous perennial

Flowers:
Most species of Hosta are grown for their large, striking foliage rather than their flowers, but Hosta plantaginea has large, white very fragrant flowers in late summer. Blue leaved forms require shade, while green leaved types can take more sun.

Foliage:
Leaves come in a wide range of shapes, colors, sizes, and textures and may be solid in color or variegated in different combinations of blue, green, white, and gold.

Culture:
partial shade to shade

Other:
The plants are low maintenance and are widely available in nurseries and garden centers.
Many catalogs also offer a large selection of hosta plants, with more than 2,500 different cultivars on the market.
Size depends on the cultivar.

Episode 609: Elephant EarElephant Ear

Common Name: Elephant Ear

Scientific Name: Colocasia sp./ Alocasia sp.

Elephant ear is the common name for Alocasia, and Colocasia is commonly known as Taro. Since alocasias and colocasias look alike, one is often mistaken for the other. But alocasias have thicker leaves that are often held upright, with petioles attached at the leaf margins. They like to be kept dry and usually need some shade. Colocasias have thinner, papery leaves that are held perpendicular, with petioles attached in the middle of the leaf. (The botanical term is "peltate.") They like to be kept wet and prefer full sunlight.

Type:
Both groups are evergreen perennial plants found in tropical forests in sunny open places or shaded, usually damp sites. Both belong to the Araceae family, originating from South and Southeast Asia.
A growing variety of species and cultivars are being offered. New breeding and selection efforts have brought small and giant habits, spotted and cup-shaped leaves and pink, red, purple and black petioles, stems and blooms.

Foliage:
The leaves of both groups are medium to large and arrow-shaped, with strong veins and fleshy petioles.

Culture:
Many species are root-hardy to Zone 8 and some even to Zone 7. For the rest, you can dig up the rhizomes after the first light frost and store them in a dry, dark place that's cool but above 45 degrees (a crawl space or garage). Both plant groups grow in a wide range of soil and moisture conditions.

Other:
They grow mainly from rhizomes, or horizontal, underground stems that often send out roots and shoots from their nodes. Some grow from tuberous roots. They're all easily propagated by dividing the root ball, rhizomes or tubers. They're resistant to deer, too.

Episode 610: Dwarf PomegranateDwarf Pomegranate

Common Name: Dwarf Pomegranate

Scientific Name: Punica granatum ‘Nana’

Type:
ornamental shrub

Flowers:
orange-red flowers, late summer- fall

Fruit:
small pomegranate fruit

Foliage:
small green leaves

Growth:
4ft. tall, 4ft. wide

Culture:
full sun, but will tolerate part shade

Other:
hardy Winston-Salem and east in NC

Episode 611: Hot Lips SalviaHot Lips Salvia

Common Name:
Hot Lips Salvia

Scientific Name:
Salvia microphylla ‘Hot Lips’

Type:
herbaceous perennials

Flowers:
bi-color

Fall:
white with red margins (hence the name “hot lips”)

Summer:
either solid red or solid white

Foliage:
fine-textured small green leaves
fragrant

Growth:
30” tall
Spreads 2-4ft.

Culture:
full sun, but will tolerate part shade

Other:
attracts butterflies and hummingbirds
use in mixed borders or containers

Episode 612: Variegated Japanese PierisPieris

Common Name: Variegated Japanese Pieris

Scientific Name: Pieris japonica ‘Variegata’

Common Name: Dwarf Lily of the Valley Shrub

Scientific Name: Pieris japonica ‘Prelude’

Type:
evergreen shrub

Flowers:
arching racemes of white, bell-shaped flowers in Spring
dwarf selection flowers later than other varieties
decorative flowerbuds

Foliage:
deep green
‘Prelude' has pink leaves in spring that turn to dark green

Growth:
varies depending on the cultivar, but slow-growing

Culture:
part shade to part sun
well-drained, but slightly moisture retentive, soil

Other:
Japanese pieris makes a good specimen shrub for the light shade under large oaks or pines.
The smaller cultivars are suitable for container growth, and the smallest ones are used for bonsai.

Episode 613: Dwarf FothergillaFothergilla

Common Name: Dwarf Fothergilla

Scientific Name: Fothergilla gardenii

Type:
deciduous shrub, native to the southeast

Flowers:
white flowers in spring

Foliage:
great fall color: leaves are red, burgundy, orange, yellow
green in spring

Growth:
3-5ft. tall

Culture:
full sun

Other:
related to witch hazel
use in a mixed border or as a foundation plant