PDN Fall Sale – 20% Off

We've just completed our fall inventory and as often seems to happen, some of the coolest plants didn't sell in the numbers that we'd hoped so we're left with extra inventory…the nature of offering so many non-mainstream plants. Consequently, and because we need space to propagate and pot new plants for spring, we're offering those over 150 plants at 20% off. The sale plants must be ordered by midnight Sunday November 2, 2014 and scheduled to ship or be picked up no later than Friday November 7, 2014. Quantities are limited on some items, so sale prices are only valid while current stock lasts. Click here to shop all sale plants. Read more [...]

Saccharum arundinaceum – peak bloom

Saccharum arundinaceum11

I always look forward to mid-October because I know I’ll get to again enjoy one of our largest and most stunning ornamental grasses, Saccharum arundinaceum.  The giant ornamental sugar cane is truly a spectacle of the fall garden…here it is today just outside our kitchen window…a great way to obscure an unsightly neighbor.

Hardy Lady Tresses Orchid – Spiranthes

Spiranthes cernua Chadd's Ford3

One of my favorite fall-flowering perennials has to be the easy-to-grow native orchid, Spiranthes cernua var. odorata.  I just snapped this photo in the garden where it’s been flowering for nearly a month.  For us, it fares well in partial to full sun.  Soil moisture hasn’t been critical, but err on the side of too much moisture.

Begonia henryi

Begonia henryi4

The dwarf Begonia henryi is looking great in the garden today.  This small gem has attractive silver mottled leaves that fade a bit by late summer/early fall when the flowering starts. It’s also much smaller than Begonia grandis, so it fits well into smaller gardens.  The Chinese Begonia henryi came through our cold winter last year, but really appreciates a spot where it can stay on the dry side over winter.  I doubt it will be winter hardy much further north.

An explosion of perennial salvias

  The garden is ablaze with perennial salvias now, including several with blue or near blue flowers.  Above is Salvia 'Amistad'...a flowering machine that continues at the same pace all summer.  Unlike Salvia guaranitca, Salvia 'Amistad' does not spread via rhizomes, although it does form a wide clump. and here is Salvia guaranitica 'Argentina Skies'...a much lighter blue that does make a large patch due to its spreading nature.  Both plants are a feast for the bees. Read more [...]

Upright spider plant – Chlorophytum columbrianum

One of the frustrations of offering little-known cool plants is quite often these plants won't sell because folks aren't familiar with them.  Here's a great example from the garden today, the South African spider plant, Chlorophytum columbrianum.  This stunning fall bloomer is an incredible perennial, providing a superb form and show in the fall garden.  Over a four year period, we only sold 79 plants...less than 20 per year.  Unfortunately, these low numbers aren't enough for us to keep it in production, so this summer, we dumped out the remainder of our crop, and yes, that hurt.  So, here's what you missed.  Perhaps in the future, we'll try again...especially if enough of you say that you like it...let us hear from you. Read more [...]

More coastal NC botanizing

Here are a few more photos from my recent coastal NC botanizing trip.  This was the first time for my stepdaughter Katie to join me in the field, and here she is with her namesake, katydid, dining on the fall-flowering carphephorus. Lots of cool woody plants including this amazing dwarf wax myrtle, Myrica cerifera...a perfect dwarf 30" tall x 30" wide...no pruning ever required. I was truly shocked to find Cornus florida (dogwood) growing in the swamps and looking this great in the early fall.  This clone with extra large leaves looked like something I'd expect in early spring...no signs of mildew or leaf spot, and obviously very tolerant of standing water. This variegated Liquidambar (sweet gum) wasn't bad either...now, to get it grafted. Much of the land in this area is a longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) /wiregrass savannah..sandy soils with a very high water table and regular flooding. If you look close among the "weeds" you'll find large patches of Sarracenia Read more [...]