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Kniphofia ‘Jan Brennan’
at Digging Dog

Kniphofia

Torch Lily or Red Hot Poker

“Red Hot Poker” is the local nickname for these bold, handsome natives of Madagascar and tropical South Africa. Brought to England in 1707, they were kept as greenhouse treasures until 1848, when someone had the bright idea of planting them outdoors, and their abiding hardiness was discovered.

The old-fashioned orange and yellow form has survived years of neglect in abandoned gardens here on the coast; the new hybrids and species we offer, in versatile creamy yellows, chartreuses, soft melons and bolder colors, are more suitable to modern schemes, but are just as hardy and reliable. The thick, almost succulent leaf blades are evergreen, and of interest even when the cylindrical flower spikes are absent. Heat and drought tolerant.

Kniphofia ‘Jan Brennan’ full sun

Flaunting one of the brightest, most rotund torches we have ever seen, this jaunty Kniphofia was discovered by Gretchen Hahn, a former staff member, in the backyard of a local north coast resident. Unknown to us and most likely a hybrid of Kniphofia uvaria ‘Nobilis’ which has naturalized in our area, it bears the owner’s namesake. The large radiant florets graduate in color, beginning on top with a salmon hue that shades to tangerine and then transmutes to antique gold supported by a lemon-yellow base.

Bolstered on bronzed olive-tinted stems above brawny medium green leaves, the exuberant display can be staged alongside Eucomis ‘Sparkling Burgundy’ for unbridled oohs and awhs!

Blooms August – September.

Size: 3' 0" high x 2' 0" wide; hardy to zone 7.

Kniphofia ‘Jan Brennan’ (P-1341)
SOLD OUT!
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Other selections in this genus


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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

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Our featured plant: Hydrangea quercifolia 'Sikes Dwarf'

Perennials that cool down a hot summer day, refreshing foliage, soothing blooms, last chance to take advantage of our summer sale!

Bring sparkling beauty to your August plantings

Perhaps you’re looking for some soothing floral or foliar accents on a hot summer day! We’ve found that snowy white, clear pink, pale yellow and deep blue blooms coupled with silver, bluish green or emerald-toned leaves become refreshing counterpoints to warmer-hued flowers. They offer a place where your eye can rest, much like cleansing your palette when tasting wine. These shades meld the spicy-colored flowers of many Achillea, Crocosmia, Dahlia, Geum, Helenium, Kniphofia, Rudbeckia and Salvia.

Our next guided Saturday Strolls is August 19th., followed by September 16th & October 7th. We hope you’ll come visit us this summer.

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~Mary Kay in New York


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