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New Plant
New/Featured for 2019

Full Sun
Full Sun

Partial Shade
Partial Shade

Shade Lover
Full Shade

Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant

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Picture Available

Drawing Available
Drawing Available

(PPAF) = Propagation of this plant prohibited without a license.

Hardiness Zone Map


Baptisia

False Indigo

Distinguished by their stately postures, these long-lived Legume family members grow wild in the eastern and southern regions of this country. A handsome mass of leaflets grouped in threes and erect, branching stems hosts showy spires adorned with small, sweet-pealike blooms. Later, large brownish black, papery seed pods form, which bring captivating visual accents, and even rattling sounds to arrangements. Easily cultivated in well drained sites, Baptisias tolerate poor, sandy soils and some drought, but resent having their roots disturbed.

<i>Baptisia australis</i> var. <i>minor</i>

Softly colored racemes laden with lavender-blue, sweet-pealike flowers sway well above a compact assemblage of rounded blue-green leaves. Displaying a stance and foliage about one half the size of Baptisia australis, this superb variety’s nearly 2 ft. tall blooms are unparalleled. Later, large brownish black, papery seed pods form, which bring captivating visual accents, and even rattling sounds to arrangements.

Blooms mid-April–early May.

Size: 15" – 2' 0" high x 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

<i>Baptisia</i> x <i>bicolor</i> ‘Starlite’

Twinkling like stars, a sky full of lupine-like periwinkle-blue flowers are set aglow by creamy white bases, known as keels. The deep violet-lavender buds populate numerous 2 ft. tall bicolored spires rising above blue-tinged oval leaflets on gently arching stems. Bred by Dr. Jim Ault from the Chicago Botanical Gardens, this robust australis and bracteata cross is a medium-sized, soft-hued perennial that can be paired with Centaurea 'Purple Heart' for an engaging medley. (ppaf)

Blooms May – June.

Size: 3' 0" – 4' 0" high x 3' 0" – 4' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Newly introduced by acclaimed plantsman Tony Avent, this tall ultraclassy Baptisia alba hybrid is included in the Mt. Cuba Center’s top-10 Baptisia list for its consistent standout attributes. Towering pure white flower spikes surmount tall sturdy stems that emerge with dark purple tints, crafting eye-catching contrast. Trim, glaucous bluish green leaves sprout well above ground level to reveal more of the sleek upright stalks, while both the luminous flowers and large fruit beguile garden visitors and flower arrangers alike. (pp#26,827)

Blooms late May–June

Size: 5' 0" high x 4' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 3.

<i>Baptisia</i> ‘Royal Purple’

Populating dramatic 1 ½ ft. tall spires, ‘Royal Purple’s ample dark violet blossoms exhibit the most opulent, deep purple coloration of all the trialed Baptisia cultivars at Delaware’s highly acclaimed Mt. Cuba Center. This impressive Chicagoland introduction boasts a bumblebee haven of blooms, plus an attractive shrub-like habit with tailored blue-green foliage, lengthy seasonal interest and a virtually pest-free vigor. (PPAF)

Blooms May–June

Size: 3' 0" – 4' 0" high x 3' 0" – 4' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

<i>Baptisia</i> ‘Solar Flare’

Distinctive for its lemon yellow flowers blushing an array of rich orange and violet hues as they mature, ‘Solar Flare’ lends sunny charisma to any border. The copious blooms are held on tall spikes well above dapper blue-green leaves, which frame a stylish vase-shaped habit with a broad dense head.

A complex hybrid of Baptisia tinctoria, alba and australis developed by Dr. Jim Ault, this fabulous, new bicolored cultivar demonstrates un-bridled vigor and makes an uplifting complementary statement alongside Asclepias ‘Soulmate’. (pp#20,408)

Blooms late May – June

Size: 3' 0" – 4' 0" high x 4' 0" – 4-1/2' wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Hosting roughly 100 bicolored flowering stems in just 3 years time, this Dr. Jim Ault cross between australis and spaerocarpa exudes vitality galore. The attractive, bushy blue-green pedestal hoists 32 in. tall spikes studded with umpteen dark coppery purple blooms enhanced by lemon-yellow keels. Marvelous in bud with bright green calyxes and buttery tips, and later infused with violet as the blossoms age, ‘Twilite’s unique floral hues make a toasty counterpoint to its cool-toned foliage that looks neat all season. (PPAF)

Blooms late May – June

Size: 3' 0" – 5' 0" high x 4' 0" – 5' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Our featured plant: Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora ‘Honey Angels’

Colorful Crocosmias, Be Awed by your August garden, Saturday Strolls!

Click here to view our Late August 2019 Newsletter!

Colorful Crocosmias!

Crocosmias pack a punch of late summer color as our gardens transition into autumn. Their clustered tubular flowers populate the ends of gracefully arching spikes, which emerge from handsome sword-like foliage. Ranging from yellow, peach and orange to fiery red, their prismatic shades look exceptional with white flowering perennials such as Phlox ‘David’, Selinum wallichianum and Aster ‘Bridal Veil’, as well as the blue blossoms of Aconitum, Agapanthus ‘Storm Cloud’ or Aster ‘Twilight’. For fun you could create a hot border, blending them with Kniphofia, Helenium, Salvia and even other Crocosmia, plus be sure to include some in your next bouquet. Commonly referred to as Montbretia and hardy to Zone 6, they appreciate, good drainage, adequate water and some shade in scorching summer sun. Please feel free to check out our extensive collection of Crocosmia cultivars in the perennial section of our online catalog.

YES, it’s possible to be in awe of your late August garden….

At this point in the season, some areas in our gardens may appear a tad worn or lackluster. If you haven’t already done so, you may wish to cut back a few tired looking perennials, such as the Nepetas or Geraniums, so you can enjoy a fresh flourish of growth plus more blooms. Adequate moisture and an additional application of compost will also ensure late summer vigor. Incorporating plants that provide a bounty of flowers and alluring leaves in August and September helps buoy our spirits, and hopefully even inspire a little awe as we approach fall. Though the plants featured in this newsletter either promote a bold statement or possess more refined aspects, they equally caught my eye and made me pause to take a closer look. Perhaps they’ll spark a wondrous moment for you as well. All of us Digging Dog plant wranglers wish you Happy Digging!

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