2012 Field Trials Reports: Dallas Arboretum

Celosia 'Intenz'

Trial Managers: Jimmy Turner, Senior Director of Gardens, 8617 Garland Rd., Dallas, Texas, 75218, jturner@dallasarboretum.org

Jenny Wegley, Senior Research and Greenhouse Manager, 8617 Garland Rd., Dallas, Texas, 75218 jwegley@dallasarboretum.org

Field Trial location(s): Dallas Arboretum, Dallas, Texas

Date planted: Week 19 (May 7 to May11)

Number Of Entries: More than 3,300 entries for spring and summer trials)

Trial Website: www.dallasplanttrials.org, www.dallasarboretum.org, www.FlameProofPlants.org

Weather: We caught a break this year compared to our triple-digit heat of last year. We had no record-setting triple digits this year. Overall, our summer was very pleasant and mild. We did hit over 100°F on several occasions, but nothing like the summer of 2011. The one factor that did do damage to some material was our lower humidity at the peak of our summer. This caused burn and stress on several cultivars.

Pest/disease outbreaks:  No signs of disease or pests with these trials.                                        

Unusual occurrences: Low percentage of humidity throughout our summer.

Top Performers

1.  Catharanthus ‘Cora Cascade Strawberry’ (vinca) (Goldsmith Seed)

This new color in the ‘Cora Cascade’ series adds a wow factor to a series that already stands out.  A dark pink flower with a darker center trails about 2.5 feet long. ‘Cora Cascade Strawberry’ is a constant bloomer throughout the summer heat. Plant in a hanging basket to achieve the total affect. This cultivar performs like others in the series with 100 percent germination and less than six weeks to finish in a 4-inch container.

2.  Celosia ‘Intenz’ (Ball Ingenuity)

This new celosia has multiple points of interest. Dark green leaves with bright purple blotches compliment electric-pink flower spikes. ‘Intenz’ did take a short break in the extremes of our summer. Once the night temperatures cooled down, it re-bloomed. It was very quick to root from a plug and it filled out a 4-inch or quart container in 3-5 weeks. ‘Intenz’ looked awesome in retail containers, but performed exceptionally well in-ground.

3.  Gazania ‘Gazoo’ series (Goldsmith Seed)

There’s nothing like a great gazania to spice up a spring landscape. ‘Gazoo’ is a seed variety with baseball-sized flowers that come in orange, red and yellow with solid center as well as orange, red and yellow with darker-colored bordered centers. This series will last all summer long if you plant in early to mid-spring to allow the roots to establish before the extreme heat starts. Feed on a regular basis so chlorosis does not occur. ‘Gazoo’ has a very high germination percentage, takes less than a month on the mist tables and is five weeks to finish in a 4-inch container.

4. Acalypha ‘Tiki Tropical Tempest’ (Plug Connection)

What a perfect foliage plant for any landscape! Lime- to dark-green large leaves cover this compact 4-foot tall specimen. Plant in full sun in the landscape or in a container. It is very easy to root from a plug and fills out a one-gallon pot in 6 to 8 weeks.

5.  Heliotropium ‘Simply Scentsational’ (Proven Winners)

We have had little success with heliotrope in our past trials, but ‘Simply Scentsational’ is what it says — sensational and scented. One plant can reach 2 feet across, and mild blue flower panicles cover this plant all summer long. The hotter it is the better! This is a very easy plug transplant and will finish in a quart in about 3 to 5 weeks.

6.  Begonia semperflorens Heat Elite series (Michell’s)

Begonias can be the best or worst-looking plant in your garden. The Heat Elite series will get your early spring landscape off to a fast start. This is a very vigorous seed variety that blooms in early spring. It will continue until the temperatures are constantly above 100°F. This series is available in deep rose, rose, white, pink, red, scarlet or a mix. This is still a B. semperflorens, but it does not have the meatball look often seen with this species. There was some inconstancy in germination percentage and it still takes forever and a day on the mist table, but this series out-performed the competition in the landscape. The fast growth and large size of this series are best showcased in pots larger than 4 inches on the retail shelf.

7.  Ageratum ‘Blue Diamond’ (Hem Genetics Seed)

Ageratum does one of two things for us — lives or dies. There are only a few cultivars that have worked well for us in the past; we will now add ‘Blue Diamond’ to this list. ‘Blue Diamond’ has a compact habit that does not lodge in the middle summer. The leaves stay a dark green and do not fade with high temperatures. ‘Blue Diamond’ has a perfect height; at 18 inches tall, it is great for the front or the back of your landscape and is covered in purple-blue button flowers. We had 100 percent germination this season. It was on the seed table for less than a month and finished in a 4-inch pot in less than 5 weeks.

8.  Salvia splendens Sizzler series (Floranova)

This is a great plant — a perfect series for early spring color in part sun. ‘Sizzler’ comes in a wide range of colors. Several of the cultivars have bicolor-bracts, which create exciting color contrasts in the landscape. Sizzler had nearly a 100-percent germination with all of its cultivars. It was very quick on the mist table — less than a month, and finished in a 4-inch pot in less than 4 weeks.

9.  Pelargonium Tornado series (Goldsmith Seed)

Pelargonium varieties have come a long way regarding heat tolerance. Several years ago, we could not get one to last until mid- June. We are seeing the majority of heat tolerance in the vegetative series. Tornado is a seed series that out-performed most pelargonium series this year in our trials. Tornado is an ivy geranium that comes in a variety of colors. This series had close to 100-percent germination and finished in 6 weeks in a 4-inch container.

10. Hibiscus ‘Mahogany Splendor’ (PanAmerican Seed)

This is another one of those plants that does not need to flower to create a focal point in your landscape. This dark burgundy, 5-foot tall hibiscus is perfect for the landscape or a large pot. The maple-shaped leaves are very attractive and stand out from a distance. ‘Mahogany Splendor’ is a seed-grown variety that is relatively quick on the tables and has a high germination percentage.

 

Leave a Reply

More From Variety Trials...

March 4, 2015

Nexus Corporation’s Cheryl Longtin Encourages Women To Seek Volunteer Leadership Opportunities

When Cheryl Longtin came to the horticulture business in 1994, she applied her experience in the automotive industry to promote the adoption of more technology in greenhouse production. Longtin says horticulture, with its rich family tradition, has long promoted women in the industry compared to other industries, but women in horticulture must continue to seek out opportunities to provide volunteer leadership in organizations that shape the future of the business.

Read More

March 4, 2015

Second Annual GreenhouseConnect Will Bring Growers and Suppliers Together in San Diego This October

Following a successful inaugural event in Tampa last fall, Greenhouse Grower has announced the dates of its second annual GreenhouseConnect: October 26-29, 2015. Representatives of an expected two dozen leading greenhouse operations from across the U.S. will join senior-level suppliers at Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego for several days of one-on-one strategic meetings, a growers-only roundtable, informational sessions and a variety of networking events.

Read More
cultivate'15 logo

March 4, 2015

Cultivate’15: AmericanHort Announces What’s New

In an industry that has seen major changes occurring at a fast pace, many industry professionals leave Cultivate with their heads spinning and no clear idea of how to regroup and strategize. Cultivate’15 is “Changing the Game.” As this year’s focus, Changing the Game will call your attention to the ways in which our industry has changed and your opportunities to compete successfully.

Read More
Latest Stories
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

November 3, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Metrolina Greenhouses (Hunte…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trial results for Metrolina Greenhouses in Huntersville, N.C.

Read More
Echinacea 'Sombrero Adobe Orange' from Darwin Perennials

November 3, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Louisiana State University (…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for Louisiana State University in Hammond, La.

Read More

November 3, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: University Of Georgia Trial …

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for the University of Georgia Trial Gardens in Athens, Ga.

Read More
Superbells® Pink Calibrachoa from Proven Winners

November 3, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: The J.C. Raulston Arboretum,…

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for The J.C. Raulston Arboretum at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C.

Read More

November 3, 2014

2014 Field Trials Results: Costa Farms (Miami, Fla.)

Check out Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Field Trials results for Costa Farms in Miami, Fla.

Read More