Most of the time, I write about what I think are great landscape plants for gardeners in Mississippi to try in their landscapes. But this column is a bit different as I’m writing about a plant I don’t recommend for the home gardener.
So I ask your pardon while I turn to my alter ego as a plant nerd.
At the South Mississippi Branch Experiment Station in Poplarville, a very unusual plant is going to bloom shortly. Called a titan arum, this plant originates a long way from Mississippi -- in Indonesia.
One of the most fun parts of serving as the Southern Gardener is getting to share so many great plants with gardeners all across Mississippi and beyond. Some plants are new introductions, some are old reliable choices, and all get to be called my favorite from time to time.
I have to admit most of my gardening life can be summed up by this saying that someone shared with me on social media: “Real gardeners buy at least 10,000 plants in the course of a lifetime without having the least idea where they’ll put any of them when they get home.”
I guess I’m a real gardener. To tell you the truth, I can’t help it when I go to the garden and see all the annual color each season, along with the perennials promising to return to the landscape.
This past weekend the Garden Extravaganza was held in Jackson, and I have to say I’m feeling really inspired.
There were literally thousands of brightly colored flowering plants all begging to be taken home. Of course, I bought a few flats of calibrachoas (mainly Holy Moly!, which I described in last week’s column) and some new Supertunias.
Now is the time to start planning for the color punch that most gardeners want in the upcoming warm summer season.
This weekend will be the first big opportunity to look at the newest and brightest of the summer color when the Garden Extravaganza garden show kicks off March 18-20 at the Trade Mart in Jackson. Shows like this give home gardeners the opportunity to look at a lot of plants in one convenient location. More and more summer color is starting to show up in the garden centers, so don’t get left behind and having to choose from the leftovers.
As I walked around my landscape this weekend, I was really impressed with how my three winter staples -- pansies, violas and Telstar dianthuses -- are enjoying the lengthening days and a little bit of warmer weather.
They are blooming like crazy, almost in response to what I’ve been thinking: It’s time to start planning and planting the warm-season annuals.
What does a warm, early-spring weekend and home gardeners itching to get out and plant something add up to? You’re correct if you answered all kinds of plants ready to go on the racks at your local garden center.
Now, I wasn’t out plant shopping this weekend, but that’s exactly what I saw during my trip to pick up new fence pickets to make some repairs.
It’s that time of year when gardeners across the state start planning their vegetable gardens.
After I wrote last week about the heirloom tomato Cherokee Purple being chosen as a Mississippi Medallion winner, I’ve dreamed about the heirloom tomatoes destined to become my tasty chili and spaghetti sauce next winter.
As gardeners across the state are starting spring planting, I want to urge everyone to consider the plants selected as Mississippi Medallion winners for 2016: Serenita Angelonia, muscadine, rosemary, Drift roses and Cherokee Purple tomato.