Each year we present new plant introductions in our special December issue, and each year we hear from companies whose release schedule is just a bit different from ours. So let’s sneak a peek at a few new plants from High Country Gardens and Jelitto Perennial Seeds.
Read More: New Plants for 2016
Do you have new intros that came out after our December issue? Send us the info, and we’ll see what we can do to give them some ink.
High Country Gardens
Helianthus × Undaunted Lemon Max
Growing to about 5 feet tall with an equivalent spread, this powerhouse perennial provides hundreds of large, clear-yellow, daisy-like sunflowers in August. Give this plant room to grow in a full-sun setting; it performs well in most soils, but prefers clay. Native bees and other pollinators are attracted to its nectar-rich blooms. Lemon Max perennial sunflower is a garden hybrid between ‘Dakota Sunshine’ and ‘Lemon Queen’, and was discovered by Lauren Ogden in her garden in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Hardy in zones 4 to 8.
Penstemon pinifolius ‘Luminous’
Selected by the company as its 2016 Plant of the Year, Penstemon pinifolius ‘Luminous’ (Luminous pineleaf beardtongue) glows with bright, light-orange, yellow-throated flowers. This Western U.S. native is considered an evergreen shrublet, growing only about 8 inches tall in well-drained soils and full sun.
Hardy in zones 5 to 9.
Sorgastrum nutans Thin Man PPAF (Thin Man indian grass)
Thin Man indian grass was selected from a population of Sorgastrum nutans near Clovis, New Mexico, which helps to make it more tolerant of dryland conditions than Midwestern and East Coast varieties. Featuring deep blue, slender foliage topped by pale flowers that turn bronze in late summer, it reaches about 6 feet tall in full sun. Large seeds are attractive to songbirds.
Hardy in zones 4 to 9.
Zauschneria canum v. latifolium ‘Sky Island Orange’
Sky Island Orange hummingbird trumpet blooms in early fall, producing hundreds of long, bright orange, nodding tubular flowers that are pollinator magnets. It’s a Western U.S. native and performs best in full sun, but prefers not to be too dry; regular watering when it’s blooming keeps this perennial happy. Mature height is about 36 inches.
Hardy in zones 5 to 8.
Jelitto Perennial Seeds
Aubrieta × cultorum ‘Pixie Pearls’
Easy-to-grow ‘Pixie Pearls’ rock cress is a mounding, spreading evergreen perennial that’s good for use as a groundcover and an excellent choice for rock gardens. It reaches a height of about 4 inches and forms a dense cushion, creeping to fill in among structures or companion plants. Brilliant white, large flowers are long-lasting and attract honey bees; plant prefers sun to part shade.
Hardy in zones 3 to 8.
Heliopsis helianthoides var. scabra ‘Prima Ballerina’
Like its cousin ‘Burning Hearts’, ‘Prima Ballerina’ ox eye sunflower grows to about 24 inches its first year but tops out at about 40 inches at maturity. First-year blooming, this plant produces semi-double golden flowers that are suitable for cutting. It’s drought-tolerant and can handle clay soil; in fact, it’s adaptable to any sunny site. Also attractive to butterflies and other pollinators.
Hardy in zones 3 to 9.
Cosmos atrosanguineus ‘Black Magic’
Fragrant chocolate cosmos ‘Black Magic’ bears the richest, deepest, burgundy- red blooms—often appearing near-black—that leave an irresistible aroma of dark chocolate. Flowers bloom the first year atop strong stems that reach to about 24 inches tall. It’s perennial if the rootstock is provided with winter protection and kept frost-free.
Hardy in zones 8 to 12.
Heliopsis helianthoides var. scabra ‘Burning Hearts’
‘Burning Hearts’ ox eye sunflower boasts vivid, golden flowers with rich, red centers borne atop black stems that reach nearly 40 inches tall. Deep-purple, foliage provides the perfect background for the brilliant blooms, but is highly ornamental in and of itself. This perennial blooms in its first year and attracts pollinators; both the flowers and seed capsules are suitable for cutting. Performs best in full sun.
Hardy in zones 3 to 9.