2010 Winners Video

We finally learned how to do videos in Animoto (www.animoto.com), so wanted to share this first one here… Many more to come, including videos on trees, shrubs, waterwise perennials, and more. Let us know what you think! (Thanks to Mike Woods for his sage advice and support, and to Claire Hamlin for taking the plunge!)

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Selectable edibles – tasty treats from Plant Select

Edible nuts from golden yellowhornAt our annual meeting for Demonstration Garden Partners last June, Gary Meis, propagator for Country Lane Wholesale Nursery, offered a presentation on edible plants in the Plant Select program. We were amazed to learn how many of the plants have edible, nutritional, or medicinal uses. View the powerpoint here:

If you’d like to learn more, check out Gary’s website, wildedibleplants. I can also supply you with the plant list as a Word file if you’re interested, and Gary has an extensive list on his site, as well. Gary is available for presentations and workshops on edible native plants to a variety of groups – contact him through his website.

The photo above  is of the seed pod of Clear Creek golden yellow horn (Xanthoceras sorbifolium ‘Psgan’.) The nuts have a very hard thin outer shell, and the nuts are edible both raw and roasted. It’s an amazingly hardy small tree with gorgeous flowers (photo right). This is on my “must have” list for next year!

All photos courtesy Gary Meis.

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Springtime splendor II

Nepeta Little Trudy® with sea kale and Purple Mountain® sun daisy.

Another landscape shot in a very low-water (xeriscape) garden in northern Colorado in late May.  Little Trudy® is a new dwarf form of catmint with tiny leaves, showy flowers and is sterile! Sea kale is the large white flowering plant (Crambe maritima), and to the right is Purple Mountain® sun daisy (Osteospermum barberiae), another Plant Select® introduction.

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Springtime splendor I

Partridge feather and Turkish veronica bordered by dwarf purple iris and sand sage.

Finally some warm temperatures and all the early summer plants are in their glory. This is an unwatered garden in a rocky, mineral soil with little organic matter and a rock mulch.

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Partridge feather – for dry gardens and more…

David Winger, Hudson Gardens & Event Center (Littleton), wrote this piece about partridge feather, a 2010 Plant Select® winner.

Peter Davis introduced this plant from Southeastern Turkey in the 1950’s. As such it makes one wonder why it isn’t called a turkey feather? Nonetheless, the feathers, or rather the leaves of this plant provide its greatest appeal. Indeed they do look like partridge feathers, therefore quite distinctive from other plants. They cluster on slightly fuzzy prostrate stems forming a frilly mound radiating a silvery white to almost blue cast. The leaves stay on year round, although not as attractively in the winter as in the growing season.

The leaves are around 3 to 5 inches tall creating a groundcover that becomes a foundation for clusters of small yellow button like flowers appearing on stems slightly above the fray in late June and early July. The yellow and white make an eye appealing contrast particularly in a large colony of Partridge Feather.

Rock gardens are especially enhanced by the presence of this sun loving, low water using plant. The contrast of silvery white against the greens of other leaves is striking. Its habit of crawling over stones and inching its way up and down slopes makes it ideal for a rock garden. It also likes the good drainage raised rock gardens readily supply. Partridge Feather placed on a crest or the high point of a rock garden can be quite arresting when the leaves and flowers are backlit by the sun.

Companion plants are those that grow well together under the same growing conditions and complement each other particularly when they are flowering. Some suggestions are: Winecups (Callirhoe involucrata), Mexican Hat Cone Flower (Ratibida columnifera), Coral Canyon Twinspur (Diascia integerrima), Mojave Sage (Salvia pachyphylla) and Johnson’s Blue Geranium.

Partridge Feather isn’t a common plant in most gardens, so having one or more in your garden will put a feather in your cap.

What you need to know about Partridge Feather (Tanacetum densum var. Amani)
Height: 3-5 inches
Width: 15-24 inches
Blooms: June
Sun: Full sun or part shade
Soil Moisture: Moderate to xeric (Little or no irrigation needed once established.)
Hardiness: USDA zones 4-9 (up to 8000’)
Culture: Most soils and exposures, but does not do well in wet or humid conditions.
Special thanks to David Winger for this, and ALL his beautiful photos.

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