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Ajuga

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Bugleweed

From the Latin abigo, to drive away, Ajuga was thought to drive away disease. To some of us that disease is winter; the remedy is Bugleweed, herald of spring, with its clear blue, white or pink flowers. The crisp, crinkled foliage hugs the ground for a quick-spreading, evergreen carpet. Use Ajuga en masse under a high canopy, or to soften the hard edges of walls and paving. A moisture-retentive soil is recommended.

A new arrival from Italy, this unique Ajuga offers tiny, reddish chocolate-brown foliage. Spreading with vigor, the narrow lustrous leaves form a finely textured, close-knit ground cover trimmed by 6 in. tall spikes of bright blue flowers.

For a warmly colored tapestry effect, plant ‘Chocolate Chip’ en masse with Acaena ‘Purpurea’ alongside.

Blooms March–mid-May

Size: 3" – 6" high x 12" & spreading wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

<i>Ajuga pyramidalis</i> ‘Metallica Crispa’

It’s not a cereal advertised on MTV, but a curious combination of metallically reflective, scrunchy purple leaves, and spikes of deep blue flowers. This one is a sound choice for tight situations, between stepping stones or in a woodland setting. A good ground cover with Viburnums.

Blooms March – early June

Size: 6" high x 12" & spreading wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Lodged amid a flat of Ajuga reptans ‘Braunherz’, in a laboratory of all places, this plush offspring was first spotted by British nurseryman Mike Tristam in 1998. Forging a bold, peppy ground cover, broad eggplant-purple leaves—crinkled, wavy and scalloped—are burnished with a shiny veneer and mahogany highlights. The vibrant showing of violet-blue flowers alights stout upright stalks above a dense, weed smothering foundation that remains evergreen during most winters and braves heat spells, sunny locales as well as rabbits and deer. (pp#15,815)

Blooms April–June

Size: 4' 0" – 5' 0" high x 12" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

<i>Ajuga reptans</i> ‘Catlin’s Giant’

‘Catlin’s Giant’ is twice the size (and has twice the impact) of most other Ajugas. Its deep blue flower spires rise 12 in. above large, shiny bronze leaves. Let this one loose in a rock garden, or plant it under Corylopsis for an overlapping, opulent display of blooms.

Blooms March–mid-May

Size: 12" high x 12" & spreading wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Light up your garden path with these stunning 12 in. pinkish lavender flower spikes that actually do resemble torches. Emerging from bronze winter foliage, which is followed by the fresh green leaves of spring, such color will brighten the darkest days.

For a dramatic play of colors, place the plant under Sambucus nigra ‘Black Beauty’ or near Clematis ‘Freda’.

Blooms March–mid-May

Size: 8" – 10" high x 12" & spreading wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Embellished with blue pagodas, this verdurous Ajuga ‘Chocolate Chip’ sport produces a refined, low-to-the-ground emerald-green carpet of small slender leaves. Aptly named ‘Emerald Chip’ makes a gleaming well-trimmed understory for Physocarpus ‘Summer Wine’s lavish crimson-red foliage.

Blooms March–mid-May

Size: 3" – 6" high x 12" & spreading wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

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Saturday Strolls & Plant Chats 2019!

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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Our Featured Plant: Echinops bannaticus ‘Taplow Blue’

View our Early August 2019 Newsletter via this link!

Exceptional Echinops, Plants to freshen up your August garden, Saturday Strolls!

Exceptional Echinops!

The striking floral orbs sport either frosty white, cobalt blue or metallic-blue shades, while perched atop sturdy erect stems with handsome jagged-edged foliage. Cherished by pollinators, floral designers and gardeners alike, Echinops thrive in sunny, well-drained niches, though are tolerant of poor soil as well as rock-strewn or sandy sites. These undemanding European natives are perfect candidates for a formal border, cottage garden, meadow-style planting or a cut arrangement. Be sure to check out our online Echinops offerings.

Cool colors for your summer plantings….

Icy white, pale pink and chartruese shades perk up our August borders, while effortlessly blending with just about any color imaginable. These composed hues provide our eyes with bright, yet soothing focal points and an overall beat-the-heat ambience! Some of our cool-down favorites include: Echinops, Sidalcea ‘Elsie Heugh’  Euphorbia mellifera, Kniphofia ‘Green Jade’, Phlox ‘David’ and Tanacetum ‘Isla Gold’. I’ve also featured a handful of richer-toned flowers that I discovered on my early morning walk today. We hope you’ll try sprinkling a few of these perennials amid your landscapes and enjoy both their tranquil or more spirited effects.

Happy August and Happy Digging from all of us Digging Dog plant wranglers!

 

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