What plant do you like more that you expected? [Cross-posted]

RedBird_TNSeptember 21, 2012

Have you ever purchased a plant that you didn't have experience with, and liked more than you even thought you would? I'll throw out a couple...

The first is vitex (chase tree). I'd seen it featured in a couple of reference books for the southeast. I am pruning it as a tree. It has beautiful purple blooms (a true lilac color) from May to September. I think the bark and leaves are quite attractive as well. It also seems to tolerate drought quite well.

My second is Muscari (Grape Hyacinth) 'Valerie Finnis' that I planted in a small rock garden by my front door. I love the flowers, but what I love even more is the foliage. It is a lovely dark green that is strapping and almost fountain like -- quite graceful. The foliage just appeared a few weeks ago.(I thought the bulbs had gotten confused and sent up the foliage at the wrong time, but I checked the nursery catalog where I got them and sure enough, they send up foliage in the fall.)

Please share your experiences with "better than expected" plants.

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I have three that have pleasantly surprised me. Knock-out roses. I purchased 2 double pinks and have been really pleased with the low maintenance requirements and ease of cultivation from these roses. They smell good to boot!

The Encore azaleas. I have a couple of cultivars that have been very easy to grow and are prolific bloomers. They grow very nicely in full sun and fertile, well drained soils (make sure no alkaline soils).

A third is an annual-tender perenial that I was given some seed is 4-O'clocks. These are easy to grow and self sow without taking over. There are many colors to choose from, I have a fushia color that is very pretty. If you have not tried these guys, I would suggest trying. They like full sun and do not seem to be picky about soils.

I am sure that there will be more that I could name that I have had some success with but these three come to mind.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2012 at 10:13PM
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Nor sure this is the response you are looking for, but I've been surprised by some very common plants in my garden - not new, but I have a new enjoyment of them - so I'm not sure if it has more to do with the plants or with me - by that I mean as I am getting older and less able to garden, I become more appreciative of plants that can look really good with little attention.

My favs lately ....

dwarf nandina 'Harbour Belle'
salvia 'Black & Blue'
hydrangea 'Limelight'
sweet bay magnolia 'Henry Hicks'
dianthus 'Bewitched'
creeping phlox
and .... just added a vitex this year and like you I am quite impressed with it :-)

    Bookmark   November 2, 2012 at 6:21PM
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maternut(7 west tn)

Someone planted two double red knockout roses at my church. They are perfect, still blooming with a few frost. I now have three or four from cuttings. One plant I have, not expecting too much was Russian Sage. I love that thing.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 7:21PM
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Thanks TN Tree Man, krikit, and maternut...it's very interesting and fun to read your responses.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2012 at 6:02PM
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