The Young’s Plant Farm trial garden is located in Auburn, AL (Zone 8). It is 26,000 square feet of raised beds that include sun and shade trials. Each season 432 individual varieties, 40 combination landscape beds, 56 hanging baskets, and 180 combinations planters are evaluated. Everything in the garden was installed on April 20.
Summer temperatures ranged from 80°F to 89°F, and relative humidity was normal with a high of 90% in July. Rainfall this summer was higher than normal, measuring 30 inches for April through August, compared to an average amount of 21 inches.
Data and photos are collected biweekly from planting until the end of the growth season. A rating is given to each plant based on flower quantity, flower quality, vegetative vigor, uniformity, and overall plant health. Data and photos can be viewed on the trial garden website.
In the garden, varieties new to the market are trialed alongside varieties that are currently in the Young’s program for a comparison. This year the landscape beds were used to illustrate four current gardening trends.
Calibrachoa ‘Bloomtastic Rose Quartz’
Caladium ‘White Majesty’
Coleus ‘FlameThrower Chili Pepper’
Coleus ‘FlameThrower Salsa Verde’
Coleus ‘FlameThrower Spiced Curry’
Alternanthera ‘Purple Prince’
Gerbera ‘Garvinea Sweet Smile’
Gerbera ‘Garvinea Sweet Spice’
Marigold ‘Endurance Yellow’
Marigold ‘Sunset Gold’
Salvia ‘Rockin’ Deep Purple’
Combination planter: Angelonia ‘Archangel Blue Bicolor’ and Vinca ‘Valiant Punch’
Gerbera ‘Garvinea Sweet Memories’
Ornamental Oregano ‘Kirigami’
Portulaca ‘ColorBurst Double Magenta’