Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
There are both hardy perennials and annuals that are suited to cutting gardens. Here are some new recommended varieties for 2011.
New Calla Lilies
In the colder regions of the country, the callas are treated as summer bulbs. These are a good choice for the cutting garden. Those loving in warm climates can grow these year-round outdoors.
A number of new California Calla varieties have been introduced for 2011. These make exquisite cut flowers.
Grape Velvet California calla is one of my favorites. Very free flowering, it features lovely purple blooms with white around the edges. As these blossoms grow older, they turn dark rose.
If you prefer white callas, you won’t go wrong with Crystal Clear California calla. The pure white blossoms can have a slight blush as they age.
Moon Shadow California calla produces many stems for cutting. The multi-hued flowers are a mix of purple, white, and rose.
There is one hot color among the new California callas. Acapulco Gold has pure yellow-gold blossoms. The flowers are especially shapely, and look like cups.
New Coreopsis for 2011
In recent years a number of improved coreopsis has been introduced. While some are true perennials, others are grown as annuals. Coreopsis is among the top five perennials in some areas of the country, including Colorado and Houston.
This series includes a number of wonderful colors. Ideal for cut flowers, these are bred by legendary hybridizer Darrell Probst of Hubbardston, Massachusetts. He specializes in perennials. All of these are grown as annuals. Easy to grow, these require little attention. They tolerate hot summers and dry conditions. All of the Coloropsis plants have delicate, threadleaf foliage.
Limbo has white and bronze blooms. Caliente has red petals with a darker eye and yellow centers. Coloropsis Salsa has lovely, hot bicolored blooms. There is a yellow rim around the red inner eye towards the centers of the flowers.
Jive Coloropsis has striking bicolored flowers in very unusual shades. There’s a rim of white forming a border around the shocking burgundy eye. The centers are orange. Of all the new Coloropsis varieties, the eye on Jive is the most prominent . This is a bushy, fast growing plant. Mambo Coloropsis has light pink blooms with colorful raspberry eyes.