Caryopteris

Bluebeard

Shrouded in a blue mist from midsummer until frost, these woody, shrublike perennials proclaim an Asian heritage and Verbena relations. Aromatic and paired, the deciduous foliage is attired with dense clusters of tantalizing whorled flowers enhanced by showy extended stamens. An excellent choice for a shrubby bed, mixed border or open bank, their cool colors complement the warmer tones of late season blooms. Prized by bees and butterflies, sun-loving Caryopteris tolerates some drought and demands good drainage.

<i>Caryopteris incana</i>

This shrubby perennial is valued for its ability to handle a dry site, but definitely proves itself indispensable when masses of its deep blue-violet flowers put on a spectacular show. Enveloping stiff upright stems, the richly colored blooms are long lasting in the garden and in arrangements as well. Handsome, grayish green felted leaves emit a pleasing medicinal scent as they cloak Common Bluebeard’s looser, more open profile.

Blooms mid-August–October.

Size: 3' 0" – 5' 0" high x 4' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 7.

Caryopteris

Bluebeard

A spectacular abundance of tiny round buds and vibrant whorled blooms that look fantastic in cut arrangements mantles the fine textured bushy foundation described by compact upright stems and pewter-tinged green foliage with silver undersides. Touted as the best and the bluest of all Caryopteris, ‘Dark Knight’s swank low mounding profile can be staged right up front, tucked next to Zauschneria ‘Wayne’s Silver’ or ushered into smaller gardens.

Blooms July–September.

Size: 2' 0" – 3' 0" high x 18" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

An unparalleled cultivar selected at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, this well-groomed Caryopteris touts a taller upright stance with boundless fragrant blue-violet flowers and dashing silver-dusted gray foliage. Lavish quantities of long lasting late summer blooms, housed in terminal and axillary clusters, bewitch bees, butterflies, florists and gardeners, while the slender lance-shaped deciduous leaves waft enticing spicy aromas. Easy-care ‘Longwood Blue’ looks impressive whether planted as a low hedge, en masse or singularly as a specimen in the perennial border.

Blooms July–September

Size: 2' 0" – 4' 0" high x 2' 0" – 4' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

(Sterling Silver™)

We have esteemed English shrub breeder, Peter Catt to thank for the exceptional attributes this award winning Caryopteris promotes: small stature, elegant illuminated foliage and copious late season blooms. Whorled bright blue-violet flowers garnish a trim gathering of shimmering silver leaves that draws attention months before the blossoms appear.

An ideal addition to the mixed border, its sterling shades can be combined with the yellow umbels of Achillea ‘Hella Glashoff’ or boldly mixed with orange flowering Leonotis ‘Savannah Sunset’. (PPAF)

Blooms August – September.

Size: 18" – 2' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

Englishman Peter Catt bred sterling qualities into this easy-to-care-for Caryopteris: deep, vivid blue blossoms, an earlier, extended bloom period, and a neatly compact form that requires little pruning. ‘First Choice’ also earns its place for winning whorls of inky flowers, which emerge from the leaf axils along the upper part of each erect stem. Serrated, with a green sheen topside, the linear leaves are a soothing gray-green beneath. Blue Mist Spiraea offers arresting texture and color when staged with the toasty hues of Sedum ‘Autumn Fire’ and Spodiopogon sibiricus.(PP#11,958)

Blooms July–September.

Size: 3' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Helianthus 'Sheila's Sunshine', Persicaria 'Summer Dance', and Selinum wallichianum

Helianthus ‘Sheila’s Sunshine - P-0461

The sunflower was once an emblem of the Sun God of the Incas. Our sunflowers tolerate a wide range of garden soils, attract bees, and make great cut flowers. Blooms early August – October.

Persicaria ‘Summer Dance’ - P-1312

With foliage that’s close to lime-green, and spiky floral tails that approach the scarlet spectrum of rosy pink, this slow spreading perennial is sure to please. Happiest in semishade with ample moisture. Blooms August–November.

Selinum wallichianum - P-1406

This refined Himalayan beauty happens to be one of our favorite perennial umbellifers. With untold elegance, infinitely divided leaves craft a delicate, lacelike transparency. The compact yet airy green canopy is framed by distinctive, purple-infused branching stems that elevate a charming, late season display of white flattened umbels.

Subduing the riotous array of summertime blooms, it seldom needs staking, and appreciates a well draining moist niche. Blooms June–August.

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