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Hardiness Zone Map


Vernonia

Culver's Root

These vigorous American denizens promote an obliging stalwart demeanor plus welcome late summer flower-power. A nectar feast for the butterflies, Vernonia can be peppered throughout meadow plantings and native landscapes, accompanying chums such as Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’, Eupatorium ‘Riesenschirm’ and Sporobolus ‘Tara’.

A robust presence, unsurpassed late fall color and a compelling winter silhouette are this North American prairie dweller’s claim to fame. Painted with opulent crimson-purple hues, the flat branched heads of Aster-like flowers surmount proud stiff stems and long lance-shaped, rough-to-the touch green leaves. A finale of fluffy white seed heads matures to a rusty orange, earning its common name, while the genus pays tribute to William Vernon, a British botanist who collected the species in Maryland in 1698.

Clump-forming Ironweed is well-suited for a modern meadow-style theme, holding its own amongst bold, green bladed Miscanthus or more airy Molinia or tall perennials like Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ and Aconitum. Beloved by bees and butterflies everywhere, it’s easily cultivated, appreciating a well drained moderately moist site.

Blooms August – September.

Size: 5' 0" high x 12" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Vernonia fasciculata</i> <i>Vernonia fasciculata</i>

Venerated for its iron-related traits including arrow-straight brawny stems, fluffy warm rust-tinged seed heads and a rugged constitution, this easily grown late bloomer roams the moist prairies from Ohio to North Dakota and south to Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. Glabrous green linear leaves line smooth stalks, rendering a brilliant purple burst of densely clustered composite flowers that hosts the American Painted Lady butterfly. Its substantial hard-working presence can be featured in informal borders or meadow-style settings and ensconced with Sanguisorba 'Chocolate Tip', Eryngium yuccifolium and native grasses.

Blooms July–September

Size: 2' 0" – 4' 0" high x 18" – 3' 0" wide.

Zone 3/4.

<i>Vernonia lettermannii</i> ‘Iron Butterfly’

We owe a round of applause to Dr. Allen Armitage for his University of Georgia plant trials, which produced this highly acclaimed selection of Arkansas resident, Vernonia lettermannii. Distinguished by dainty-looking thread-like green leaves, the robust, yet compact, attractively branched mounding habit affords small, tubular bright purple blooms housed in showy terminal sprays. Possessing both a herculean mettle and ultrafine texture, "Iron Butterfly" demands free-draining niches, extends seasonal interest with warm rusty toned autumn flower color plus triumphs over hot dry conditions as well as sandy, infertile rock-strewn sites.

Blooms August–September

Size: 2' 0" – 3' 0" high x 18" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

A flashy new 2014 Jelitto Seeds introduction, this quibble-free white-blooming version of the New York Ironweed propels erect upright stalks, densely cloaked in serrated, lanceolate green leaves, buoying fluffy delicate plumes of narrow-petaled creamy white daisies. Followed by decorative seed heads, the long-lasting late season blooms make bright additions to cut arrangements and entice many garden visitors, especially the bees and butterflies. "White Lightenings" clumping bushy habit can be massed or planted as a striking focal point for a somewhat informal venue, where it readily adapts to variable conditions.

Blooms August–October

Size: 6' 0" high x 2-1/2' wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Our Featured Plant:  • Heptacodium miconioides

Click here to view our mid October 2019 Newsletter featuring "Heptacodium minoniodes: A Shrub for all seasons & Salvia Splendor!

Heptacodium miconiodes: A Shrub for all Seasons....

A denizen of China, this magnificent large shrub or small-scale deciduous tree promises to inspire you no matter what the season. Large, lustrous rich green foliage is narrowly heart-shaped amid unique exfoliating bark, which peels in thin strips to reveal a warm cinnamon-brown hue. Housed in creamy white clusters, attractive fragrant blossoms unfurl in autumn, and are followed by spectacular masses of small fruit lodged inside rosy purple calyces. Preferring moist sunny alcoves, the rounded muli-stemmed habit thwarts pests, withstands most soil types, and requires little maintenance.

Savor Late Season Salvia Blooms...

Many Salvias unleash a profusion of prismatic flowers well into autumn or up to the first frost. Offering an array of sizes, leaves and flowers, some Salvias bear bicolored blooms such as S. mexicana ‘Compton’s Form’, which sports a persistent darker-hued calyx. Even after its petals are spent, the uniquely colored calyces extend a foliar effect for weeks. Beloved by pollinators, floral designers and gardeners alike, these easy-care perennials and bushy subshrubs are tailor-made for cottage gardens, mixed borders, perennial plantings, rockeries or containers. We’ve included a handful of other plants lending late season allure that can be planted amongst the featured Salvias.

All of us Digging Dog plant wranglers wish you Happy Digging!

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