Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
For 2009, a number of new cut flower varieties will be introduced. The following plants will be available from garden centers and nurseries.
Hummingbird mints are a type of agastache. These have stately flower spikes that are used as cut flowers. For 2009, there are several new hummingbird mints. These will be available as plants in 2009 from garden centers and garden catalogs. Summer Glow hummingbird mint is a gorgeous bicolor. Hardy from zone seven and higher, this has shimmering, pale yellow blooms with contrasting dark calyces. It is about two feet tall.
Cotton Candy hummingbird mint has showy, pale pink blooms. These open on crowded flower spikes. This is hardy to zone seven.
Summer Sky hummingbird mint is hardy to zone eight. It has striking blue-violet blooms and prominent dark calyces.
For 2009, a number of new echinacea or purple coneflower plants will be available from garden catalogs and nurseries. All of these are great for cutting gardens. Pink Poodle echinacea has frilly looking, double blooms with vivid pink petals. The blossoms are up to four inches wide. The strong plants
are nearly three feet tall. This is hardy to zone four.
Mac ‘n’ Cheese echinacea is hardy to zone four. As you might guess from the name, the blooms are creamy yellow. These are over four inches across. The centers are yellowish-green. The sturdy stems are over two feet tall.
Tomato Soup echinacea is named for the vivid pure red petals. These blooms are five inches in diameter. Hardy to zone four, the plants are nearly three feet tall.
Tapestry fairy bells are a delightful cut flower. This hybrid is related to the coral-bells. Hardy to zone four, this has tall flower spikes covered with tiny bell-like pink blooms. The plants will be available in 2009.
Mystic Mist foam flower is another new perennial that makes a great cut flower. Hardy to zone four, this fast growing plant has slender flower spikes covered with masses of foamy, frilly white blooms during the spring.
Mystical Red Star hypericum is a new variety that makes a great cut flowers. The large plump berries will be ideal for fall and winter floral arrangements. Stems of Mystical Red Star should be available in 2009.
Miss Ruby butterfly bush is a new Proven Winners shrub for 2009. These stems make an excellent cut flower. Hardy to zone five, Miss Ruby reaches about four to five feet in height. The blossoms are deep pink, which is unusual for the butterfly bushes.
Incrediball hydrangea has to be seen to be believed. This new Proven Winners shrub has massive, ball-shaped flower heads. Perfect for cutting, the blooms are pure white. Hardy to zone four, the plant can be four to five feet in height. The stems are very strong and sturdy.
The Edgy hydrangeas is a new Proven Winners variety. This makes a great cut flower. These picotee hydrangeas are hardy to zone five. Edgy Hearts is one of the new ones in the series. This has lovely, frilly, bicolored blooms. Mostly deep reddish-pink, these have white lines along the edges.
Edgy Orbits hydrangea has lovely, double lace cup blooms that are perfect for floral designs. The bicolored effect is due to the deep neon pink sepals that become shimmery white along the edges. This grows to about three or four feet in height.