2015 Pike Creek Horticulture Center (Kenosha, Wis.) Field Trials Results

2015 Pike Creek Horticulture Center (Kenosha, Wis.) Field Trials Results

Winter weather at the Pike Creek Horticulture Center seemed to linger well into June. March through May were cold and rainy. The entire summer was cool with temperatures never reaching the 90°F range. Cool season annuals that usually die back in the summer heat kept chugging along all season and looked shockingly fresh in late August. Color changes from spring to summer and summer to fall were delayed. In many cases, seasonal color changes didn’t occur at all.

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Top Performers

■ Petunia ‘Tidal Wave Silver’
■ Begonia ‘Babywing Pink Bicolor’
■ Geranium ‘Calliope Crimson Flame’
■ Zinnia ‘Double Zahara Fire’
Coleus scuttelaroides ‘Campfire’
■ ‘Tidy Treats’ Tomato
■ ‘Goldprize’ Squash
■ Petunia ‘Supertunia Sangria Charm’
Ipomoea batatas ‘SolarPower Red’
■ Coleus ‘FlameThrower Chili Pepper’

Consumer Favorites

■ Petunia ‘Supertunia Sangria Charm’
■ ‘Calliope Crimson Flame’ Geranium
■ Petunia ‘Tidal Wave Silver’
■ Coleus ‘FlameThrower Chili Pepper’
■ Petunia ‘Supertunia Sangria Charm’
■ Coleus ‘Campfire’
Ipomoea batatas ‘SolarPower Red’

Trial Manager Notes

Cool season stars such as lobularia, dianthus and osteospermum looked so good they weren’t removed, just interplanted with warm season color varieties. Heat loving species really suffered and barely got a chance to show off. Begonia, angelonia and lantana all just sat there looking cold and sad. Even petunias did nothing due to frigid soil temperatures. We often trial quite a few vegetable varieties in the ground and in containers. This was an especially tough year for tomatoes, pepper and squash. On the bright side, plants that tested well this year will probably be super performers in the future!