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New Varieties 2008


  • The popularity of the New Zealand Carex species has exploded the last ten years. And it has been a wonderful surprise to be a part of the growing interest in the subtleties of Carex buchananii, the Leatherleaf Sedge, with foliage in shades of brown that, for some people, looks as if it is "dead". (It is not!) Beyond our wildest expectations, gardeners have planted this in increasing numbers and have found that the color blends perfectly when contrasted against something lighter in color like silvers and greys. The Royal Horticultural Society recognized something special, awarding this species with the Award of Garden Merit (AGM ). (There is a growing number of confusing marketing names but all seem to be the straight brown species.)

    Carex buchananii comes to "life" again with Jelitto's 'Green Twist', our new introduction this year, with olive green foliage and twisted tips that grows now consistently from seed. The clumping, evergreen 'Green Twist', hardy to Zone 6-9, grows 40 cm (16") tall and forms a broad vase-shaped, airy habit, each leaf with a tip distinctively curved rarely seen with this species. Plants can be spaced 60 cm (24") apart and are tolerant of moist soils, with good winter drainage, but will be at home in all but the driest conditions. Warning: if this one shows-up with brown foliage, you're in trouble - it is dead!

    Plant 'Green Twist' in mixed containers, the rock garden, use with other colored ornamental grasses, or in small drifts in the border.


  • A genus name derived from Greek, dios (god), anthos (flower) suggests something more than the ordinary - something positively heavenly! May be short in stature but it is long on charm. The common coastal European Dianthus arenarius grows to 30 cm (12") while Jelitto's new introduction is more compact, with denser cushions, half the size of the typical Sand Pink species. The thin grass-like leaves have a slight bluish hue and are topped with dozens of pure white, fringed blooms on short 10 cm (4") stems. And these are deliciously fragrant, too.

    Lorenzo Crescini, owner of Vivaio Valfredda in Italy, gave us a plant found in his vineyard that eventually led to this seed strain. Lorenzo has also introduced the popular Ajuga tenorii 'Valfredda' [Chocolate Chip]. The drought tolerant, summer flowering 'Little Maiden' is an easy germinator and a great candidate for finishing-off in 9 cm (3") pots. Despite its coastal origins this little Dianthus is easy to grow in every average garden if it is given full sun and good drainage. 'Little Maiden' is well-suited for green roofs, scree, the sunny rock garden or containers planted together with Iberis 'Snow Cushion, Lewisia 'Little Peach' and Sedum 'Czar's Gold'. Winterhardy to zone 3.

  • Pure seed
    Product Details ECHINOPS bannaticus  'Star Frost'


    Dramatic, bold and architectural are words that have often been used to describe the commanding features of Globe Thistles. Parkinson sang their praises in 1629 in Paradisi in Sole Paradisus Terrestris. John Evelyn later included a few species in Elysium Britannicum, a 17th century compendium of all good things to grow, under a listing for "Flowering Plants for the Coronary Garden."

    Echinops are highly regarded for their spherical prickly blooms and broad thistle-like, but not so imposing, foliage. Jelitto's 'Blue Glow' and 'Arctic Glow' are select, highly regarded seed strains. Besides decorative cut flowers and distinct ornamental value, they are easy-to-grow in average soils in full sun and are cold hardy to zone 3.

    'Star Frost' is a significant, white flowering, new Jelitto seed strain that has taken over ten years to bring to market. It is slightly shorter than E. bannaticus 'Blue Glow', with a profusion of golf-ball sized, pure white blooms - more plentiful than the species - that make lovely cut flowers. The domed blooms are made-up of dozens of tiny individual star-shaped flowers, each with 5 pure white slender petals. The leaves are deep green on the upper sides and have a lovely, contrasting grey-green below. Plant 'Star Frost' in mid-border with Agastache mexicana 'Sangria', Lilium Martagon-Hybr. 'Painted Ladies' and Echinacea purpurea 'Magnus'.


  • Who could have imagined twenty years ago that Lindheimer's Bee Blossom would be the phenomenally successful perennial that it is today? But a wild species, carrying a billowing cloud of white blooms, over a very long flowering season, was bound to catch the attention of every gardener. The current Royal Horticultural Society's Plant Finder lists over 25 different selections. We've paid attention to this phenomenon but have previously noted Gaura lindheimeri's questionable hardiness. Yes, it is a perennial hardy to Zone 6, native to small area in east Texas and Louisiana, but it has been tricky sometimes to get it through cold winters in the garden and, especially when small or in containers.

    Christian Kress of Sarastro Nursery in Austria selected a robust, hardier but sterile Gaura and work was begun at Jelitto to use this as the basis for breeding a reliable hardy seed strain. 'Summer Breeze' has impressed us on several fronts. It appears to be more cold hardy and better able to handle overwintering in containers after several years on trial. Plus, it is a considerably more robust plant growing to an impressive size of 150 cm (59") tall and spreading to 160 cm (63") within 3 years.

    Slender, sturdy wands with pink buds open into white fluttering blooms in July and continue non-stop until frost. 'Summer Breeze' will flower the first year from seed and grows up to 80 cm (32") this first season. This Gaura lives up to the Greek origin of the name gauros (superb).


  • Ligularia dentata is an unfathomable perennial creation. It seems astounding that you can have beautiful, large kidney-shaped, leathery leaves and big bold, golden daisies together on a plant that thrives in evenly moist soil and semi-shade. Dramatic cultivars like 'Desdemona' and 'Othello' have long been bright accents in the summer border but their handsome dark foliage often fades to green as the summer goes along. Seed strains have previously been inconsistent, but 'Midnight Lady', Jelitto's new introduction, is a significant step forward.

    Christian Kress, of Sarastro Nursery in Austria, selected a seedling with rich, dark colored foliage that was a bit shorter and more compact. This handsome seedling became the basis for Jelitto's breeding effort. 'Midnight Lady' has glossy purple foliage on top (black-purple in spring) and purple undersides, too, with staying power throughout the summer months. The rounded, basal leaves, nearly 30 cm (12") across have long, dark petioles. 'Midnight Lady' grows into neat 60 cm (24") tall foliage mounds. 'Midnight Lady' is easy to germinate and cold hardy to zone 3. The dark foliage is an ideal background to the corymbs of husky, bright yellow daisies. There are few contrasts among perennials so remarkable between flower and foliage for well enriched, evenly moist soils.


  • Just when you thought you had seen the last, and the best, of the Black-Eyed Susans, along comes another excellent one. Rudbeckia grandiflora is a not so common, drought resistant species of Black-Eyed Susan that grows in a few scattered sites around the Southeastern, Midwestern and Central United States. It is an elegant species with oblong basal leaves and a narrow, upright habit, featuring prominent parasols of golden yellow with tall brown cones. 'Sundance' is Jelitto's select seed strain.

    A side-by-side comparison between a few Black-Eyed Susans might be useful since this species is so little known. 'Goldsturm' is round, medium-sized, solid and remains the clear champion of mass plantings. Rudbeckia laciniata is very tall and has extra large flowers with very good cut-leaf foliage. Rudbeckia grandiflora 'Sundance' is long and lean and represents the best qualities of both. 'Sundance' will work in any border and is a stylish, new selection that can be planted as an accent plant or in smaller groups together with Echinacea 'Magnus' and Andropogon 'Prairie Blues' .

    'Sundance' is sturdier than the species with strong flowering stems to 120 cm (48") that have fewer stem leaves, allowing the lovely, big blooms to stand majestically above the basal foliage below. Dozens of long, slender stems each yield a single flower and make this a worthy cut flower candidate, too. Cold hardy to Zone 4.


  • The Meadow Clary Sage has thick mounds of large wrinkled, aromatic, oblong basal leaves (historically used as flavoring for beer and wine) and distinctively hooded flowers along the upright 50 cm (20") flower spikes from June - August. And cut away the spent flowering stems and you can expect a second flowering by September.

    Jelitto is delighted to add these two new single colors to our recent popular introductions, 'Rose Rhapsody'and 'Swan Lake' of our Ballet Series. One plant of a marvelous violet color, and another with very dark pink blooms, were originally found at Härlen Nursery in Northern Germany and work was begun at Jelitto to use this as the basis for breeding. 'Twilight Serenade' is the very best dark blue-violet colored Salvia pratensis we have seen and 'Sweet Esmeralda' is an intense, dark pink with a lovely carmine rose lip, much darker in colour than the lovely soft pink of 'Rose Rhapsody'.

    Jelitto's first year flowering Salvia Ballet-Series, with four striking single colours, is easy to produce from seed. Both of these new additions, 'Twilight Serenade' and 'Sweet Esmeralda', look lovely dancing along the pathway of cottage gardens or in the front of the border, and are undemanding in any well-drained soil in full sun. The 'Ballet Series' creates a feast for bees, butterflies and the human eye.


  • The Meadow Clary Sage has thick mounds of large wrinkled, aromatic, oblong basal leaves (historically used as flavoring for beer and wine) and distinctively hooded flowers along the upright 50 cm (20") flower spikes from June - August. And cut away the spent flowering stems and you can expect a second flowering by September.

    Jelitto is delighted to add these two new single colors to our recent popular introductions, 'Rose Rhapsody' and 'Swan Lake' of our Ballet Series. One plant of a marvelous violet color, and another with very dark pink blooms, were originally found at Härlen Nursery in Northern Germany and work was begun at Jelitto to use this as the basis for breeding. 'Twilight Serenade' is the very best dark blue-violet colored Salvia pratensis we have seen and 'Sweet Esmeralda' is an intense, dark pink with a lovely carmine rose lip, much darker in colour than the lovely soft pink of 'Rose Rhapsody'.

    Jelitto's first year flowering Salvia Ballet-Series, with four striking single colours, is easy to produce from seed. Both of these new additions, 'Twilight Serenade' and 'Sweet Esmeralda', look lovely dancing along the pathway of cottage gardens or in the front of the border, and are undemanding in any well-drained soil in full sun. The 'Ballet Series' creates a feast for bees, butterflies and the human eye.

Jelitto · Seeds of more than 3700 different species and varieties

 

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