Sunday, April 25, 2010

Plant of the Moment-Hydrangea macrophylla 'Edgy Hearts' last blog was about a certain order of hydrangea and various other lovelies that recently arrived here at Big Bloomers. In that same order were many hydrangea, about 8 different varieties if my memory serves me well (at random times it does not).

One of the hydrangea in that order was a paniculata called 'Pinky Winky'. I tend to be drawn to the paniculatas since they remind of the lovely tree hydrangea that dotted the landscapes of the beachy areas in Connecticut where I spent my childhood and also because they are much tougher than other hydrangea, able to take more sun and less water than the rest. Prune them early in spring since they bloom on new wood. In my sand they perform well without complaint. Because of my aforementioned preferences I quickly scarfed up a lovely little 'Pinky Winky' and planted it under a cedar that I had recently limbed up.

Hydrangea paniculata 'Pinky Winky'

Today, at work, Judy, one of my cohorts and coworkers brought to me a customer looking for a specific hydrangea. He told me that a friend had brought home a hydrangea that he simply had to have. Its a new one. A hybrid macrophylla named 'Edgy Hearts'. Actually this was not the first time that day I had been asked about it. Earlier another cohort and coworker, Amy, asked me about a hydrangea with heart shaped flower petals. I was busy with customers and thought she said heart shaped leaves. Anyway....I discerned through the gentleman that it was called 'Edgy Hearts' and that his friend was sure she bought it here at BB's.

This very determined and lovely gentleman proceeded to follow me all through the shop, offices and greenhouses to track down this little beauty. Judy had led them through the hydrangea section and they did not find it there so I called John, our fearless leader and he told me to check the invoices to see if we indeed had it, which I did, and found that we indeed had this illusive Edgy Heart somewhere in our greenhouses.

Since they didn't find it in the hydrangea section we checked the flats of unpotted new plants with no luck whatsoever. Then we proceeded to go into the aisles where we will sometimes put unpotted stock until the girls have time to pot them up, to no avail... Finally, I decided to go back and check the hydrangea section.

I passed right by it, but our determined and lovely gentleman customer found it a couple of cultivars down from where I had already passed.

We both had a good laugh about it being right in front of our eyes. He picked out a nice pot and then I looked at him and smiled and picked out one of my own.

I am very happy to have plants serendipitiously put in front of me and actually I am a collector of hearts..after all. My husband makes me hearts of found objects as gifts and I have a very lovely collection of heart rocks, so I am surprised I did not seek this one out myself.

Hydrangea macrophylla 'Edgy Hearts'

I am going to plant this sweetheart where I can enjoy its lovely, edgy hearts and where I have irrigation to keep it happy. Thank you to the determined and lovely gentleman customer for pointing it out to me...and for this reason Hydrangea macrophylla 'Edgy Hearts' is my plant of the moment.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Plant of the Moment-Lespedeza bicolor 'Yakushima'

Had a "moment" today at work. Plant of the moment to be exact.

As a gift to his wife's passion for hydrangea, our fearless leader John, ordered some 'Incrediball' and 'Invincibelle' hydrangea. In order to "fill out" the order he added other plants that tickled his fancy. Among them was Lespedeza bicolor 'Yakushima'. The order arrived today.

Now....I have blogged about lespedeza a number of times on this blog. I can not exclaim enough how much of a fan I am of this plant. Any plant...planted in a year of drought, planted in unamended sand that refuses to yield to the extremes that our summers can bring without any supplemental watering leaves me clapping my hands and jumping for joy.

Anyway, the two I grow tend to be cascading and expansive. Yakushima is not. Its a front of the border sweetie being 12-18" tall and 2-3' wide and its mounding habit lends itself to many situations.

Now don't get me wrong...lespedeza loves clay soil and planted in clay will be more lush and vigorous. Though I have not been displeased with how they have measured up in my sand. Rarely have I been able to plant something with such abandon in this sand that I grow in. This lovely and diminutive lespedeza gives me endless possibilities and for this reason it is my 'Plant of the Moment'.