Early Spring 2015


Bulletproof Substitutes For Impatiens

Bullet Bounce1

Last year downy mildew wasn’t so bad—conditions weren’t quite right to spread the disease around. A lot of wet, windy days would have been tough, but the bright, dry weather kept the problem at bay. Unfortunately, downy mildew is part of our environment now—it will wax and wane from year-to-year. A quick recap: downy mildew is a fungus that spreads through spores carried on the wind. Perfectly healthy plants acquire the disease from upwind infections or occasionally from spores leftover in the soil from the previous year. This means that sometimes impatiens will do well by customers and sometimes they won’t.


Heirloom Tomatoes

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If you’re like us, you remember some delicious, homegrown tomatoes you ate as a kid that actually tasted like tomatoes. Commercially bred varieties look uniformly attractive—firm, round, and red—but you have to admit, the taste is lacking, or even non-existent. 

Heirlooms can be quite beautiful—or not. They’ve got personality; but more importantly, they always deliver that old fashioned tangy-sweet flavor that seeing them brings to mind. That’s why we grow heirlooms.


Cuphea Sriracha Series

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‘Sriracha Violet’

Here’s a new eye-catcher for the landscape. If you’re looking for big vibrant blooms that keep coming all through the hottest days of summer—pass the Sriracha. These plants are heat-lovers, doing justice to the sauce that inspired their name.

Notice the unusual tubular flowers. The petals look a bit like rumpled up pieces of paper, such as you might find in an abstract art project. That papery texture gives the flowers a delicate appearance; it’s hard to believe they stand up to scorching heat and drought conditions, but they do.


Crossandra ‘Orange Marmalade’

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It’s also called firecracker plant, and that ought to tell you something. This tropical selection puts on quite a show, producing large clusters of brilliant, frilly orange flowers—nonstop—all season long. Glossy dark green foliage makes the blooms pop out and seem even more vibrant than they actually are. 

Crossandra is related to the Mexican petunia, or ruellia, and the yellow shrimp plant—another tropical variety we’re offering this year. Native to India and Sri Lanka, it thrives in the heat and humidity. Women in those countries often pick some crossandra blossoms to wear in their hair, and it’s easy to see why.


Graffiti Pentas

Penta Graffiti Violet

A little known plant that’s getting more and more attention these days is pentas. You might not be familiar with it, and if you are you might know it as Egyptian starflower or starcluster. This African native is gaining in popularity largely because it produces beautiful star-shaped flowers all season and thrives in extremely hot, dry climates—like ours here in Cincinnati in the high summer.