2012 Field Trials Reports: Colorado State University

Tecoma 'Bells of Fire'

Trial Manager: Dr. James E. Klett, Professor and Extension Landscape Horticulture Specialist, Colorado State University, Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Campus Delivery 1173, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1173, jim.klett@colostate.edu

Planting Dates: May 22, 25, and 31, and periodically through June 14.

Number of Entries: Approximately 1,100 varieties from twenty companies

Weather: Extremely hot and dry with days over 90°F in July, August and into September. Little to no rainfall from early July to mid-September. Many days the temperature reached 100°F.

Trial Website: www.flowertrials.colostate.edu

Best of Show: Dahlia ‘XXL Hidalgo’(Dümmen USA) This plant brings a unique class to the garden dahlia category and was a standout without special care. The flowers are relatively large and are noted for having a deep, rich “butter-French” color. Flowering started early and continued strong late into the season, complimented by the dark green foliage. This dahlia will add stature and glamour to the typical garden.

Best New Variety: Lantana ‘Luscious Berry Blend’ (Proven Winners) Besides the prolific flowering, this variety was an eye-catcher due to a beautiful blend of bright flower colors.  The plants had great vigor and formed a dense canopy. Another superior feature of this varieties is that it produces virtually no fruit or seeds and saves its energy for a constant show of blooms.

Best Novelty Plant: Tecoma ‘Bells of Fire’ (Plug Connections) Both the foliage and flowers of this plant have a very tropical look. Besides the unique appearance, flowering often begins as a small plant in the greenhouse and continues throughout the summer. The blooms are reminiscent of those on a trumpet vine. The flowers are quite showy and are an attractive blend of orange-red.

Top Performers

Calibrachoa ‘Superbells Lemon Slice’ (Proven Winners)

Pelargonium ‘Caliente Fire’ (zonal geranium) (Syngenta Flowers)

Impatiens‘Impreza White’ (seed) (PanAmerican Seed)

Impatiens ‘Super Sonic Magenta 08’ (New Guinea impatiens) (Syngenta Flowers)

Petunia ‘Whispers Star Rose’ (vegetative spreading) (Syngenta Flowers)

Impatiens‘Sun Harmony Salmon’ (New Guinea impatients) (Danziger)

Verbena ‘Lanai Deep Purple’ (spreading) (Syngenta Flowers)

2012 “Best Of…” Winners

Best Angelonia: Angelonia ‘Carita Purple’ (Syngenta Flowers) This angelonia variety performed well in a container but looked remarkable in the ground. Outstanding features included the many flowers with a deep, rich purple color on an attractive, vigorous plant with good foliage color.

Best Argyranthemum: Argyranthemum ‘Everest’ (Danziger) Attractive blue-green foliage combined well with the large, white, daisy-like flowers. Blooming was strong and continued through the heat of the summer and late into the season. Plants were uniform in growth habit and slightly larger than most other argyranthemums.           

Best Begonia boliviensis: Begonia boliviensis ‘Santa Cruz Sunset’ (Benary)
This begonia surprised some since it was grown in full sun during a very hot summer. Evaluators noted that it was “tougher than you think.” Not only did it survive these conditions, it thrived as evidenced by the robust, seed-grown plants and uniform growth habit. Flowering was strong through the season, and the blooms are a wonderful fiery shade of red-orange. Colorado’s higher light exposure makes the leaf become more bronze in color.

Best Begonia xhybrida: Begonia ‘Whopper Rose With Green Leaf’ (Ball Ingenuity) The adjective “whopper” used in the name is definitely not a misnomer. Its impressive overall vigor is immediately noticeable in the large, uniform growth habit as well as the sizeable flowers. Beautiful green leaves compliment the bright, rose-colored flowers. Plant growth excelled in full sun, and it is reported this variety does just as well in shade.

Best Calibrachoa:  Calibrachoa ‘Superbells Lemon Slice’ (Proven Winners) The Striking yellow and white bicolor pattern on the flowers is very showy even as a small plant in the greenhouse. Prolific blooming and good vigor made this variety very popular with evaluators, who also ranked it high for consideration for both “Best of Show” and “Best New Variety.”

Best Coleus: Plectranthus ‘Wasabi’ (Ball FloraPlant) Bright chartreuse foliage and a vigorous growth habit make this plant a standout from across the garden. Up close, the ruffled leaf edge adds some textural interest.  Its vigor was impressive, and it grew to be a large plant even in full sun.

Best Combo: Kwik Kombos Night in Pompeii (Syngenta Flowers) This combo has excellent balance in all areas, as no one plant dominated the other (lobelia, petunia, verbena). The striking color combination created a mysterious, moody appearance. A nice blend of large and small flowers makes this combo visually interesting as well. The growth habit is very symmetrical, and flowering occurs from the center all the way to the edge throughout the summer.

Best Diascia: Diascia ‘Darla Deep Salmon 11’ (Syngenta Flowers) Prolific blooming gave this variety an impressive canopy of salmon flowers throughout the summer despite the intense heat. Flower color remained steadfast in the full sun, and flowers were relatively large.

Best Ivy Geranium: Pelargonium ‘Grand Idols Purple’ (Fides Oro) Prolific, bright flowers combined nicely with the full plants and uniform growth habit. The unique flower color was more of a rose or neon pink than purple as described in its name.

Best Zonal Geranium: Pelargonium ‘Caliente Fire’ (Syngenta Flowers) Impressive color dominates this plant ― from the rich red flowers to the unusually dark green foliage. The color contrast is striking, but so is the prolific blooming and overall uniformity. It grew well despite a summer of unusually intense heat. The exceptionally good branching habit of this variety brings together its European and American breeding

Best Impatiens (seed): Impatiens ‘Impreza White’ (PanAmerican Seed) The floriferous, clean white flowers on this variety made an impressive display with the dark green foliage. Growth habit and flowering was very consistent on each plant. The variety is also noted for remaining manageable in greenhouse production as well as its ability to hold and not stretch in the pack.

Best Lantana: Lantana ‘Little Lucky Pot of Gold’ (Ball FloraPlant) The plants were dark green and loaded with rich, gold flowers, which created a magnificent contrast. The growth habit was very uniform. This plant was bred for borders and also makes an excellent groundcover.

Best Lobelia: Lobelia ‘Magadi Blue’ (Selecta) Despite two weeks of unexpected temperatures near 100°F in June, flowering remained strong even late into the season on this variety. Blue flowers had a small white eye that shows well with the dark green foliage. Plants had good vigor and no dieback.

Best Marigold: Tagetes ‘Christy Orange Improved’ (Ameriseed) Relatively large orange flowers were noted as being “super double” due to their high petal count. Short, compact plants with dark foliage not only contrasted nicely with the orange flowers but had the added feature of not lodging despite the overhead watering. This created a problem for some other marigold varieties.
 
Best Osteospermum: Osteospermum ‘Serenity Dark Purple’ (Ball FloraPlant) Rich, dark purple flowers were large and very showy. Blooming continued throughout an exceptionally long, hot summer. These healthy plants were noted for having a nice, tight growth habit.

Best New Guinea Impatiens:  Impatiens ‘Super Sonic Magenta 08’ (Syngenta Flowers) Beautiful, rich, red flowers had blue undertones that created a unique shade of magenta. Blooms were huge and very showy. The overall growth of the plants was large but had excellent uniformity.

Best Petunia (veg-mini): Petunia  ‘Littletunia Blue Vein’ (Danziger) This plant was characterized by prolific flowers that had attractive dark veins streaking through the petal. The plants were exceptionally vigorous and enveloped the container to create a “ball made of flowers.”

Best Petunia (veg-spreading):  Petunia‘Whispers Star Rose’ (Syngenta Flowers) Intense flowering resulted in blooms covering the plant to the point where you could hardly see any foliage. Flowers were a striking combination of white flowers with a rose “star” pattern. The plants were compact early on in the greenhouse but had exceptional vigor and uniformity in outdoor trials.

Best Petunia (seed-spreading):  Petunia ‘Trilogy White’ (American Takii) The prolific flowers had a crisp, clean white color making a striking display. The plants did not lodge and maintained a uniform, mounded growth habit. The blooms were relatively large.

Best Purslane/Portulaca: Portulaca ‘Happy Trails Deep Red’ (PanAmerican Seed) The flowers had a very deep red color with double petals. The plants were vigorous, taller than most varieties and had good foliage color.

Best Scaevola: Scaevola ‘Bombay Dark Blue’ (Syngenta Flowers) Dark blue flowers were very numerous throughout the season. Plants liked the unusually hot summer, and the growth habit remained tight and uniform.

Best New Guinea Impatiens For Sun:  Impatiens ‘Sun Harmony Salmon’ (Danziger) These plants were specifically bred for high sun tolerance, and many varieties in this category looked good. Despite the strong competition, ‘Sun Harmony Salmon’ was selected as the best for its abundant flowers and vigorous, yet uniform plants. It was impressive when grown either in the ground or in a container.

Best Torenia: Torenia ‘Summer Wave Large Amethyst’ (Suntory) These robust plants had green foliage that was dark and glossy. Abundant flowers were noted for having a deep blue amethyst color that made a nice contrast with the foliage.

Best Spreading Verbena: Verbena ‘Lanai Deep Purple’ (Syngenta Flowers)
Competition for the “Best Of” was quite intense in this category, but the abundant dark purple flowers won the day for this variety. The plants were vigorous, but very uniform and maintained good blooms throughout the season.

Additional Plants Rated as Superior in 2012

Lobularia ‘Lavender Stream’ (Danziger) This variety was a standout for its unique rich purple flower color. It was also chosen for its superior growth habit, which had excellent controlled vigor. Evaluators stated that it “plays well with others” and would not overgrow other plants in a border.

Ornamental Millet ‘Jade Princess’ (Ball Ingenuity) This was one of the most unique and eye-catching plants in the garden due to the large, fuzzy seed head. As the flower inflorescence emerges, the color begins with a rich maroon and chartreuse that matures into a solid dark maroon plume. The large fluffy flower panicle that emerges from the foliage brings to mind the image of a fox sneaking through tall grass. The foliage is a wide, chartreuse-colored leaf blade.

Leave a Reply

More From Variety Trials...
PP&L CAST 2015 intros

April 22, 2015

6 Breeding Companies Serve Up New Varieties At Pacific Plug & Liner

Pacific Plug & Liner’s theme this year, Labyrinth, a conservatory of the world’s most captivating plants, was perfectly topped off (pun intended) with fascinators for the women and newsboy caps for the men. The PP&L team dressed their part to act out the gothic “conservatory of the world’s most captivating plants.” Truly, the displays looked like they practically popped out of a catalog, and the costumes were a nice touch. Retailers take heed, the fully merchandised displays at Pacific Plug & Liner are worthy of emulating. We’ll let the pictures tell the story of all the fabulous variety introductions presented at  Pacific Plug & Liner’s 2015 California Spring Trials, where Cultivaris, Cohen Nurseries, Histil Nurseries, Jaldety Nurseries, Southern Living/Sunset Collection and Pacific Plug & Liner all highlighted their 2016 introductions.  

Read More
Speedling 2015 CAST intros

April 22, 2015

Speedling Inc. Presents New Varieties From ABZ Seeds, Hem Genetics, Thompson & Morgan, Vista Farms & PSI

You name it, we saw it at Speedling's California Spring Trials location in San Juan Bautista, where five companies showed off their new introductions for 2016.

Read More
PittMoss on Shark Tank

April 22, 2015

PittMoss Wins On Shark Tank

Mont Handley, president and CEO of PittMoss, appeared on ABC’s Shark Tank on April 17 to try to get the “sharks” to invest in his peat moss alternative. Three investors from the TV show contributed $600,000 to PittMoss for a 35 percent stake in the company. Check out this clip from ABC’s website in which Mark Cuban, Kevin O’Leary and Robert Herjavec discuss getting on board with the product. PittMoss is an alternative to sphagnum peat moss, made up of a mix of proprietary additives and recycled paper rescued from landfill space. Handley founded the Pittsburgh-based company in 1994. What started as a small experiment grew into a full-fledged business with the help of funding provided by an EPA SBIR grant and Pittsburgh’s Idea Foundry. Today, PittMoss is available to commercial greenhouses and nurseries from Michigan to Maine to North Carolina, with plans to grow. To learn more, visit PittMoss’ website, or check it […]

Read More
Latest Stories
Gazania hybrid 'Amber Ice' (Cultivaris)

April 17, 2015

The 80/20 Theory Approach To Inventory Selection Is Put…

Tim Runte of Calloway Gardens is a member of Greenhouse Grower's Medal Of Excellence For Industry's Choice Panel. Here, he shares how he determines which plants shown at this year's California Spring Trials will make the cut at his retail stores.

Read More
Dummen_SunStandingseries_Salmon Pink1

April 15, 2015

Dümmen Group Updates Confetti, Debuts New Mixes And Con…

At two separate locations, the Dümmen Group presented its new take on several lines of plant genetics from the many companies under its brand umbrella. For the second year at Edna Valley Vineyards in San Luis Obispo, the Dummen Group presented new varieties of Red Fox plants, along with the HGTV HOME Plant Collection. Meanwhile, Dummen Group held its second trial location about 30 minutes up the road, at BarrelHouse Brewery in Paso Robles. Both locations were beautiful settings, but the vineyard provided especially lovely panoramic views through the tasting room window.

Read More
CAST15_Suntory_Soiree1

April 15, 2015

McHutchison’s Vaughn Fletcher Reviews New Offerin…

Vaughn Fletcher with McHutchison Horticultural Distributors is part of Greenhouse Grower's Medal Of Excellence For Industry's Choice Panel. Fletcher recounted some of the standout varieties he saw while visiting Suntory Flowers and Westhoff during California Spring Trials.

Read More
PAC Elsner_Pelargonium 'Bermuda Pink'

April 15, 2015

Kientzler Makes First Independent Display At Spring Tri…

The Spring Trials exhibit at Windmill Nursery in Buellton is a fairly new location as of 2014, and it continues to evolve, with a number of new suppliers presenting their wares. Kientzler, Terra Nova Nurseries and PAC-Elsner presented new varieties while McConkey, Pelemix and Dramm promoted their products.

Read More
Hort Couture_Asclepias Monarch's Promise

April 15, 2015

Hort Couture Boosts Butterflies With ‘MonarchR…

The new milkweed 'Monarch's Promise' aims to improve butterflies' forage options, and it's already working. Plus, chck out the action from GroLink's 11 displaying companies.

Read More
Costa Farms' Season Premier 2015

February 4, 2015

Costa Farms’ 2015 Season Premier Reveals Newest V…

The annual Season Premier at Costa Farms in Miami, Fla., is the industry's very first peek at new varieties for debut the following year, even before the California Spring Trials, heralded widely as the jumping off point for new varieties. This year's event revealed breeders' best and brightest new varieties for 2016, shown in field trials, landscape trials and containers at Costa Farms tropical trial gardens. Plant breeders presented their new varieties to buyers and members of Lowe’s grower panel. Growers, brokers and other allied industry members, including Home Depot growers and buyers, were also able to peruse the grounds to see how the new varieties fared in the winter trials. Later this season, the hot and humid conditions at Costa’s summer trials will help identify the true performers.

Read More

January 28, 2015

All-America Selections Introduces Additional 2015 Winne…

All-America Selections has announced more 2015 AAS Winners, bringing the grand total of introductions for the 2015 gardening year to 25. The seven winners join the 12 announced last November and six announced last July. This year, AAS has had the most winners in one year since 1939.

Read More

November 24, 2014

Succulents And Miniatures Offer Variety And Easy Growi…

Succulents and miniatures are great starter plants for brown-thumb gardeners. They deliver visual appeal, color and texture without a fuss. Here are some of the newest varieties on the market.

Read More

November 18, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Best Of Show Varieties [Slid…

Find out which varieties made Best of Show at the 2014 Field Trials.

Read More

November 14, 2014

University of Florida Poinsettia Trials Will Be Held De…

Poinsettia trials event at the University of Florida will be held on December 9 in Gainesville, Fla.

Read More

November 14, 2014

University Of New Hampshire Hosts 2014 Poinsettia Trial…

The University of New Hampshire will host 2014 Poinsettia Field Trial Open House at its Macfarlane Greenhouses facility on December 4 to 6.

Read More

November 4, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results

Greenhouse Grower asked trial managers to share their top performers this year. See which varieties were true standouts.

Read More

November 4, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Welby Gardens (Denver, Colo.…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials Results for Welby Gardens in Denver, Colo.

Read More

November 4, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Texas A&M AgriLife Resea…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Overton, Texas.

Read More

November 4, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Oklahoma State University (S…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla.

Read More

November 4, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Colorado State University (F…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo.

Read More

November 4, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: University of Tennessee Gard…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for the University of Tennessee Gardens in Knoxville and Jackson, Tenn.

Read More

November 4, 2014

Varieties Appearing On 2014 Field Trial Top Performer L…

Greenhouse Grower asked trial managers to share their top performers this year. See which varieties appeared on top performer lists at least twice.

Read More