Here’s a brief travel report and a challenge from our itinerant guest ranter Allan Armitage.—Eliz.
I’ve been in California, viewing the pack trials up and down the West coast. This is the time where most of the world’s plant breeders show off their new herbaceous plants (mostly annuals, some perennials) for the growers and buyers to view. Breeders from America (Ball, Pan American), Europe (Benary, Syngenta, Dumen) and Japan (Sakata, Takii)—to name but a few—show off their wares. I’ll let you know if I see anything exciting.
I am often asked what my choices would be for the best plants that have come on the market for gardeners in the last while, and have presented a number of talks about recent “breakthrough” plants—in fact I’m making my own list of the greatest 10 plants (annuals and perennials) introduced over the last 10 years. (For example, it would likely include the Geranium ‘Rozanne.’)
However, perhaps you can help me compile a list that is more reflective of what real gardeners are growing than the one I have. If you would like to participate, pick 5 plants that you feel have been breakthroughs (i.e., plants that made the genus better due to subsequent selection, plants you would recommend to your friend who kills everything, or plants you absolutely must have, and if they die, you would replace them with the same plants). This must be done in the next few days to be compiled into a list I will call “The Garden Rant’s Greatest” and if there is some consensus, I will talk about the list when I am speaking in your neck of the woods. Remember, annuals and perennials only, and if a perennial, provide your USDA Zone. Five plants only—this should be interesting!
a video from the Greenhouse Grower TV of Dr. A talking about the California Pack Trials and his impressions (screenshot at top).
Please leave your list of your 5 breakthrough plants for Dr. A in comments.Thanks!