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New Plant
New/Featured for 2020

Full Sun
Full Sun

Partial Shade
Partial Shade

Shade Lover
Full Shade

Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant

Picture Available
Picture Available

Drawing Available
Drawing Available

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

Hardiness Zone Map


Tricyrtis

Toad Lily

Some say this fascinating species owes its common name to the Philippine Tasaday Indians’ practice of wiping their hands with juice from the blossoms before setting out to collect frogs. Others say it’s the unusual spotted flowers that account for the name. Whichever story is true, the blooms have such detail and quiet beauty that they should be admired close-up. They open on gently arching stems for long periods in late summer and early fall, when most other flowers are already spent. With a moist, humus-rich soil, all the Toad Lilies will form elegant clumps.

A jewel of the shadows, waxy lily-like flowers are defined by pronounced violet anthers and creamy white and powder-blue petals dramatically splashed with bluish purple flecks. Compact gently arching stems and ovate emerald-green leaves forge a stylish vase-shaped base for rounded maroon buds and exotic-looking late season flowers. Inheriting hirta and formosana ancestry, ‘Blue Wonder’ needs to be ensconced along a path where its amazing detail is easily relished.

Blooms September–October

Size: 18" – 2' 0" high x 12" – 15" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis</i> ‘Dark Beauty’

An easy-to-keep late season temptress, this formosana and hirta hybrid flaunts orchid-style alabaster-colored flowers, each artfully spangled with saturated purple spots and a gold-tinged center. The eye-catching floral pageant unfurls from rich, velvety maroon buds that crown tall lusty stems clad in broad, 8 in. long semiclasping leaves. Sure to pique fall visitors, ‘Dark Beauty’s polished dark greenery can accompany Anemone ‘Wild Swan’.

Blooms September–October

Size: 3' 0" – 4' 0" high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis</i> ‘Empress’ <i>Tricyrtis</i> ‘Empress’

Renown for its extralarge and wider open flowers, this exquisite, newly introduced Toad Lily is a formosana hybrid. Fanciful, spidery spaced petals are inscribed by occasional darkened tips and irregular rich deep purple spots, stipples and mottling on a creamy white background. An enticing fall mainstay in the darker corners of your landscape, ‘Empress’s showy terminal blooms are supported by a robust upright gathering of shiny, semiclasping dark green foliage that stays dapper all season. Moist humus-rich abodes ensure a luxe clump.

Blooms August–September

Size: 2-1/4' high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis formosana</i> ‘Autumn Glow’

Beaming with prominent, broad yellow margins, ‘Autumn Glow’ promotes one of the most striking variegations amongst the species. Dark purple speckles plus amethyst-colored dapples tattoo ornate clustered creamy-hued flowers, surmounting sturdy branched stalks and glossy rich green foliage. A lucent beacon for bright shade, this handsome Tricyrtis quickly produces a robust colony that looks splendid amid companions such as Geranium ‘Blogold’ and Persicaria ‘Golden Arrow’.

Blooms August–September

Size: 2' 0" high x 18" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis formosana</i> ‘Samurai’

Smaller in stature than the other Tricyrtis cultivars we offer, the wine-colored upright stems of this garden “warrior” are a striking complement to its light green leaves. A further touch of light is achieved by the irregularly variegated, creamy leaf margins. Orchid-like purple flowers have dark plum speckles, and gold and white highlights at their centers. Skirt it with Epimedium ‘Lilafee’.

Blooms August–September.

Size: 16" high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis</i> ‘Hatatogisa’

These purple-spotted, dark dusty blue flowers with white centers evoke images of early night skies sprinkled with stars. The dark green foliage is also spotted, and combines with deep purple buds to give this spectacular Tricyrtis long lasting appeal. Plant with Kirengeshoma and double the intrigue of the flowers and foliage.

Blooms September–October.

Size: 2' 0" high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis hirta</i> ‘Moonlight’

Attired in neon-bright chartreuse foliage, this hirta ‘Variegata’ sport is a shining beacon for any shady spot that needs some oomph. Arching stems feature arresting, purple flecked white flowers that heighten the illuminated composition.

Introduced by Bluebird Nursery, ‘Moonlight’ maintains its refreshing, well-groomed look throughout the season.

Blooms September–October.

Size: 20" high x 18" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis lasiocarpa</i>

A favored standout among Tricyrtis, this exceptional species sprouts an attractive tightset clump of sturdy erect arching stems garbed with glistening green and purple freckled alternating leaves. Amethyst and blue petal tips embellish white upward facing orchid-style blooms that populate large well-branched terminal sprays. Hailing from Taiwan, where it has been observed growing in nearly full sun, Amethyst Toad Lily’s lovely long blooming flowers can model their ornate features in a brighter garden bed.

Blooms August–September.

Size: 3' 0" high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 7.

<i>Tricyrtis</i> x ‘Sinonome’

Long esteemed in Japan for its elegant cut flowers, ‘Sinonome’ presents a pleasing vase-shaped clump of upright stems lined with lustrous, clean-looking dark green foliage. Emerging from buds the color of chocolate, white, upfacing blooms show off richly colored ruby freckles. One of the more heat and drought tolerant Toadlilies, this Tricyrtis could be planted next to Aster divaricatus.

Blooms September–October.

Size: 2' 0" – 3' 0" high x 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Tricyrtis</i> ‘Taipei Silk’

Cresting showy 5-branched terminal panicles, the gleaming 1.5 in. wide jewel-box-like flowers are comprised of a subtly gold-dusted center and 3 ivory-colored petals with reddish purple speckles plus 3 darker petals colored in deep violet and mauve. A 2005 Darrell Probst cross between Tricyrtis formosana and Tricyrtis lasiocarpa, "Taipei Silks" elaborate late season floral display is presented above stiff straight stems and lustrous greenery. (pp#18,727)

Blooms September–October

Size: 2-1/2' high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

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Our featured plant:Cercidiphyllum japonicum

Dazzling deciduous trees, November garden oomph!, 2020 T-shirts still available!

Dynamic deciduous trees!

One of the greatest joys of gardening is bearing witness to the changes each season etches upon the landscape. While the crisp blustery autumn days feel invigorating, they also afford some of the most dynamic transformations. The featured deciduous trees are internationally renown for their undemanding handsome habits and prismatic fall displays. Please feel free to visit the tree section of our website and learn more about them!

November garden oomph….

The shorter days and cooler nights of November kindle tantalizing fall color when we include a medley of both evergreen and deciduous woody plants coupled with herbaceous perennials and ornamental grasses. Thankfully, once fall settles in, most of us have less gardening chores and more time for leisurely strolls through our leafy sanctuaries. The plants included in this newsletter offer either late season blooms, captivating leaves or artful branching patterns plus beguiling late season oomph! We hope you’ll consider digging some of them into your garden. 

All of us Digging Dog plant wranglers wish you Happy Digging and good health.

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