Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
When choosing flower varieties for the cutting garden, it’s hard to beat the following award winners.
Twinny Peach snapdragon is a wonderful new cut flower variety. This was named an All-America Selections Bedding Plant winner for 2010. These beautiful double flowers are pale orange and yellow. The stems are literally covered with masses of frilly blooms. This snapdragon is named for the double flowers, which are fused or twinned. These appear throughout the season, beginning about ten weeks from the time the seeds are sown.
Snapdragon Snappy Rose was also named one of the best overall performers at the University of Illinois Arboretum. Trials took place at the Miles C. Hartley Selections Garden, which is located in Urbana.
Snapdragon seeds are easy to start indoors. Do this four to five weeks before your expected last frost. The seeds will start sprouting within ten days. Plant snapdragons outdoors in the cutting garden in full sun.
Snapdragons can have a vase life of one to two weeks. These stems tend to bend towards the light.
Throatwort Garden Leader Purple was among the top five varieties at the Michigan State University Horticulture Gardens in East Lansing. It was also a favorite at the University of Wisconsin trials, which took place at the West Madison Agricultural Research Station in West Madison.
The throatworts are grown mostly as an annual. These can be treated as perennials in zones eight and higher. In the cutting garden, these need full sun and a well drained soil.
These stems have a vase life of a week to ten days. They’re used as a medium mass flower. The stems reach three feet in height.
Noblessa yarrow was named one of the best overall performers at the Oklahoma State University trials in Oklahoma City. This is adapted to drought and needs a well drained spot in full sun. These stems are over 1˝ feet in height.
Yarrow stems can last two weeks or more as a cut flower. They’re used as a medium mass flower, and are a favorite for mixed bouquets. These can also be dried as an everlasting.