Garden Report- Green Hills. May 4, 2014


I went over to Green Hills today to plant Wild Blue phlox that the garden’s owner had dug out of her driveway at her farm over on the plateau. This was work enough, but I also had plants from Burpee, Plant Delights,and Old House Gardens that had arrived at week’s end.

Burpee sent me two “Illumination Flame” Digiplexis.I saw the plant recommended on the Southern Living website.It is a hybrid of the Isoplexis, found on Tenerife and adjacent Canary Islands, and the Common Foxglove. How interesting it will be to see what it inherits from its parents, since Isoplexis  grows in a mild maritime climate and foxgloves grow in Canada. It has foxglove flowers that are carmine and orange, and its boosters say it blooms all season. Here it is in its Burpee pots, sans flowers-


Another arrival, the one from Old House Gardens in Michigan, is Canna “Ehemanii”, a cultivar from 1863. Both tubers are certified “Virus free”, for a canna foliage virus has spread in the canna growing world much as Rose Rosette has spread through the rose beds and nurseries. (Add the Downy Mildew killing off bedding Impatiens, and we now have a trifecta of plant plagues).

From Plant Delights came  two “Phyllis Fancy” salvias. Here is a photo from last fall, taken in Green Hills-


It is a wondrous salvia, but no more hardy than a wax begonia. Cuttings strike easily, and I will overwinter some in my south window, along with the equally tender “Wendy’s Wish”.

Since the Digiplexis is an unknown, I used my Southern Strategy in siting it. I put it in rich soil where it will get early sun , and afternoon shade. I think this is the best way to handle new plants, for if it fails to thrive I can be certain that July and August did not burn it to death, though there is the possibility they may steam it to death.

And here is Cestrum “Orange Peel”, coming back from the roots.



It should be four to six feet tall by autumn. Here is a photo of it last year-



And here is a fine plant I raised from seed last summer. It is said to reseed, and that would be good fortune- It is the Purple Mullein, Verbascum phoeniceum.










About talesofanashvillegardener

Professional gardener, Experimental Cook. Constant Reader
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