If you’ve been gardening for a while, you know the gardening world is not unlike the fashion world. Any given plant is never the only one of its kind—there are hundreds, if not thousands, of varieties of that plant with an unlimited set of unique features. Plant breeders are the fashion designers in this scenario. They’re the experts on gardening trends, predicting what’s going to be in-style before it even happens. Every year they release new plant varieties with new features, colours, or even health improvements versus older varieties. Today, we’re shining the spotlight on Proven Winners®, one of the top breeders in North America.
Why We Love Proven Winners®
While Proven Winners® offers a massive range of perennials, shrubs, and just about any other plant you can dream of, they’re best known for their fabulous selection of annuals. Proven Winners® are leaders in developing varieties with incredible colours, healthy genetics, and captivating blooms. At Mother Nature, we’re the only Certified Proven Winners® Garden Centre in Powell River. That means our staff are experts in the current Proven Winners® line, and can offer advice and inspiration for using their varieties in your garden design. Once you start growing their gorgeous plants in your containers, window boxes, garden beds and borders, you’ll see why thousands of gardeners are loyal to the brand.
Best Proven Winners® for Our Zone in 2019
Proven Winners® is a very popular brand, and their plants are found all over North America. As it is with any plant, some varieties are better suited to our region of BC than others. If you’d like to try Proven Winners® this year, these plants are some of the best for Northeastern British Columbia.
Snow Princess® Lobularia – This Sweet Alyssum variety is vigorous and tolerant of both heat and cold—great news for our sometimes temperamental climate! A heavy drinker, Snow Princess needs to be watered frequently, sometimes twice a day, and treated with a continuous release fertilizer. This variety is best for container gardening in large containers, where it functions as a great spiller plant. It also makes a fantastic ground cover in beds and borders with its spreading habit and vigorous, continuous blooms. As with any Sweet Alyssum, Snow Princess blooms smell absolutely wonderful!
Diamond Frost® Euphorbia – As delicate and airy as Diamond Frost looks, it’s incredibly independent. A great filler for container gardening, this mounding plant coats the soil surface with a blanket of airy white flowers that don’t need deadheading. Some fertilizer will help you get the best performance from Diamond Frost, but it stays vigorous even with a little drought and neglect.
Supertunia® Vista Bubblegum® Petunia – This hot-pink petunia has a feature that not every petunia has—it’s self-cleaning! With no need to deadhead, this vigorous petunia has a mounting and trailing habit that fills hanging baskets, containers, and landscapes with bright bubblegum-pink blooms. Only grow this plant if you want to attract a LOT of attention!
Superbena® Superbena Royale Plum Wine – This verbena variety is a real diva, but it’s also persistent. With a mounding-trailing habit, it happily spills over large containers and fills landscapes with gorgeous wine-coloured flowers. It can survive on a little compost in the soil, but it does best with some slow-release fertilizer. With that said, it can handle fairly average-quality soil and isn’t particularly demanding with water. Just be careful not to let Plum Wine take over your containers, it can spread up to 24 inches!
Superbells® Double Ruby™ Calibrachoa – Calibrachoa are gorgeous spillers for containers, and Double Ruby makes a stunning impression with its ruby-red blooms. They look like miniature petunias growing off a cascading stem. They look stunning in containers of all sizes and attract hummingbirds with their bright double blooms. This variety is quite sensitive to wet soil and should be kept in a pot with plenty of drainage.
Snowstorm® Giant Snowflake® Bacopa – This bacopa will have your heart all a-flurry! Their snowflake-like flowers blanket this gorgeous plant, which spills out of containers in a blizzard of blooms. These plants look right at home in containers or for landscaping, and are wonderfully low-maintenance. Tolerant of heat and drought, the most you’ll have to do is occasionally offer them a dose of fertilizer with their water.
Luscious® Citrus Blend™ Lantana – We have a soft spot for lantanas thanks to their adorable flower balls. Citrus brings the heat with a sunset colour palette, with blooms from vibrant red to zesty oranges and yellows. Their light scent and eye-catching flowers add a warm accent to any area of your garden. Functioning as fillers in containers, they look great when used in flower boxes and porch pots at the same time. They are quite tolerant to heat, drought, and poorer soils — a win for gardeners short on time.
Playin’ The Blues® Salvia – While salvias are available in a broad range of shades, by far the most popular salvia shade is blue. Blue is a relatively uncommon colour to come by in the garden, but Playin’ the Blues is a gorgeous true-blue thriller. The calyx of this salvia is also blue, so this salvia continues to add cool colour past the bloom period. This sterile variety blooms non-stop all season and is a great maintenance-free way to fill space in your garden. It also looks just as stunning in containers, vases, or when mass planted.
Señorita Rosalita™ Cleome – Cleomes have had a bad rap for a while. That’s because many varieties take over garden beds with seedlings, grow thorns, or even smell a little funky. Rosalita is Proven Winners® response to these problem cleomes with a plant that doesn’t self-seed, doesn’t smell, and looks amazing with flowers all over the plant. These lively lavender-pink thrillers can thrive in average soil with average watering, whether in containers or the landscape.
Intensia® Red Hot Phlox – Lovers of intense red colour will go mad for this ultra-brilliant red. The attitude on this filler is serious—make sure your containers can handle it! The neat mounding habit of this phlox creates a beautiful bed of red colour to build on. We can see this one looking awesome as part of a Canada Day-themed container or landscape accent combined with Intensia® White.
Proven Winners® Plant of the Year 2019
No Proven Winners® piece is complete without the 2019 annual of the year, Lemon Coral® Sedum! This chartreuse succulent is incredibly easy to grow and adds a zing of citrus colour to any spot in your landscape or containers. This one is a must-have this year for on-trend gardens!
While these plants are proven to win in our climate, there are plenty of other fabulous Proven Winners® varieties to choose from that can make a splash in your garden this year! Visit our garden centre today and talk to our specialists, we’d love to recommend some of our personal favourites.