sally-bensonThis year – 2014 – marked my 20th year as editor of American Nurseryman. Hold on: I don’t mention that because I’m hoping for applause (thank you, thank you very much), but because it means that, through some querk of the calendar, this is the 21st time I’ve had the privilege and pleasure of working with our annual New Plant Introductions issue.

I inherited the task – the tradition started before my arrival – and I was thrilled to do so. Each year there’s been a bounty of exciting selections; sometimes more woody plants than perennials, but more often than not there are more perennials. Occasionally we receive some oddball; thankfully, there were none this year.

On occasion, too, we receive some questionable submissions. It’s not unusual to see two companies submitting the same plant, each claiming the right to exclusive introduction. Or there’s a plant that’s been on the market for years but hasn’t had much success: Would we consider “reintroducing” it?

Alas, as much as we’d like to see each and every plant succeed, we must restrict our coverage to those plants that truly are new. That definition has become fuzzy in the past few years, but we’ve tried hard to vet each and every submission to make sure that we’re fair to all.

Yes, it’s work. But you can’t ask for a better way to occupy your time. With every plant that is nominated, we know there’s a history of trial and toil. But with every new plant that is nominated, we know there’s a dream.

And especially during this holiday season, we celebrate that dream. Please join us in the joy of new plants.

Dream on.

To view the New Plants for 2015, click here.