Lonicera sempervirens - comparing cultivars

christie_sw_mo(Z6)February 16, 2007

Does anyone have different cultivars of this honeysuckle to compare? I'm wondering if the hummingbirds like them all or have a favorite.

Culivars I've seen listed are: (Don't know which ones are commonly available)

Alabama Crimson

Cedar Lane

Blanche Sandman

John Clayton


Sulphurea or Flava

Major Wheeler



And of course the species

I watched for the species last year and didn't come across it. Now I'm wondering if I might have seen a named cultivar but wouldn't have known at the time that it was a sempervirens which I've seen recommended so much for hummingbirds. It may just be something I'll have to order.

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penny1947(z6 WNY)

I only have the species which I ordered two years ago from Mail Order Natives. I do know that Alabama Crimson is one of the good cultivars and John Clayton is being grown by one of our Hummer gardeners in St. Louis and he says it blooms earlier than the species and that it is more vigorous.

Some of the others don't have as long a bloom time and some take a few years to get established before they bloom(not sure which ones) . If you can get the species I would go with that one first.

P.S. seeds are in the mail


    Bookmark   February 17, 2007 at 6:41AM
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Thank you Penny - We have a native plant sale coming up here in April so maybe I can find it there.
I'll watch for Alabama Crimson also.
I'm anxious to get the seeds you're sending and will email you when they get here. I am so looking forward to summer. I'll have lots of new plants this year.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2007 at 2:58PM
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jenny_in_se_pa(USDA7 Sunset 32)

Christie - I have "Blanche Sandman" and didn't get chance to notice if they went to it or not. It was in an odd spot and not easy for me to see and I had so many other hummer plants out there that they were all over the different plants when not at the feeder.

I have seen "Alabama Crimson" and "Magnifica" at nearby nurseries and they are similar-looking to "Blanche Sandman" as far as I could tell (aside from slight differences in color intensity - I think the Crimson was more reddish, the Magnifica more orangey, and my Blanche Sandman has more red/pink in it).

In general, they go for just about any native or native cross honeysuckle. I also have a Mandarin honeysuckle and each year, they buzz around it waiting for it to bloom. LOL That one is a bright burnt orange & yellow, but the flowers have tubes that are longer than L. sempervirens and its popular cultivars.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2007 at 8:57AM
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Alabama Crimson is a great plant - also check out 'Dropmore Scarlet" (lonicera sempervirens x brownii?) I have both and the hummers love them equally , and constantly!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 1:21PM
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susan82(So. CA)

I am looking at getting Lonicera for a fence. I understand
it is a hummingbird magnet! I didn't realize there were many different cultivars.

I think the one I am leaning towards is the reddish/pink with yellow -
I guess that would be Blance Sandman. Is this easy to find at local nurseries?
Is there a good mail order source?
When does it start to bloom?


    Bookmark   March 4, 2007 at 3:24PM
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penny1947(z6 WNY)

It seems that different locations or garden centers will carry different cultivars depending on what there customers want most. Mail Order Natives carries the species and Alabama Crimson, Lonicera 'Sulphurii', and Lonicera x heckrotti 'GOLD FLAME'


    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 8:23AM
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