Monday, January 24, 2011

Native Seeds for 2011

After assessing what did and did not do well last year, I placed my seed orders for native seeds. Here’s a run down on what I’ll be trying this year.

New Plants
Pearly Everlasting (Anaphalis margaritacea) A perennial with white, long lasting flowers. I’ve been frustrated growing the related annual Sweet Everlasting (see below), so I thought I would try a perennial version.

Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) This perennial that does well in dryer sunny locations and attracts many pollinators. I’ve seen a few plants commercially available but I wanted to make sure I had some growing this year.

Rosey Sedge (Carex rosea) I was given a small clump of this foot-tall perennial grass for nearly 5 years ago. I thought I should test it out in some different locations. This sedge prefers part to full shade.

Flowering Spurge (Euphorbia corollata) This perennial is also known as Prairie Baby’s Breath. I thought this could be good for general landscape use, with white flowers through mid-summer.

Woodland Sunflower (Helianthus divaricatus) This perennial sunflower grows well in dry shade. It can be weedy in the garden, but I really want to test it out under the Norway Maple. I’ve seen this brightening up shady oak woodlands in the middle of summer.  This is the first year that I have been able to find seed.

Alleghany vine (Adlumia fungosa) I’ve written a lot about this biennial vine. I just can’t get enough. Note that these seeds need 90 days of cold stratification, so don’t wait if you want to try this one!

Orange Hummingbird Mint (Agastache aurantica ‘Navaho Sunset’) grew quite well last year and now I need more to try with clients. I really like the scent of the gray-green foliage and the flowers are pretty nice, too.

Rock Harlequin (Corydalis sempervirens) This another plant that I love.  I just need more rocky places to put it.

Sulfur Cosmos (Cosmos sulphureus) This native of Mexico (a part of North America) grows as an annual in the Northeast.  I had a crop that returned for 4-5 years until it got crowded out by some Bidens. I thought I would try to start it up again. While the bloom is similar to that of the swamp marigold (B. aristosa), this Cosmos starts blooming earlier and for a longer time.  Also, the foliage is not as dense.

American Pennyroyal (Hedeoma pulegioides) has been getting established from a planting 2 years ago, but I’d like to try more in some different locations. This will do well along a path.

Spotted Beebalm (Monarda punctata) was pretty successful last year and I need more to try with some clients.

Sweet Everlasting (Pseudognaphalium obtusifolium) has given me trouble on transplanting in the past two years. I’ll try this again, this time seeding directly in the garden in prepared soil (not in compacted turf).

One last try...
These three plants did not germinate for me last year, but I’ll try one more time with a lengthy stratification in moist starter mix.

Fern-leaf False Foxglove (Aureolaria peduculata) This biennial is parasitic on oaks, but, reportedly, does not need them for germination. I also have some of these scattered around a nearby oak. Stay tuned…

Tall Swamp Marigold (Bidens coronata) is an annual, with good-sized yellow flowers. I'm curious to see how if differs from the other Bidens I have around.

Brown-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia triloba) is a short-lived perennial, that while taller, has a more delicate appearance than the typical Black-eyed Susan (R. hirta).  I've posted a number of photos of this species over the past year.

Returning on their own:
I'm sure the Swamp Marigold (Bidens aristosa) will be back, but I will be pulling these up to make room for new plants.  I will have a lot of the biennial American Bellflower (Campanulastrum americanum) in 2011, judging by the large number of rosettes in the 2010 garden.  Also, I will keep an eye out for the return of any of the Texas native annuals: Indian Blanket (Gallardia pulchella), Drummond Phlox (Phlox dummondii) and Scarlet Sage (Salvia coccinea), that bloomed so nicely last year.


Karyls said...

thanks for the tip on Helianthus divaricatus. I've been looking for some ground level flower to grow in dry oak woods. So far I've had rotten luck!

Curtis said...

Because of the aggressive nature of this sunflower, you should check to see if this plant is indigenous to you area. You don't want to introduce such an aggressive species if there are not natural controls in place to keep it in balance.