Buddleia ‘Pugster Blue’
Full-sized flowers on a dwarf plant!
Meet Pugster Blue – it’s a whole new look for butterfly bush. This compact plant reaches just 2’/.6 m tall and wide but has the large, full flowers normally seen on a much larger plant. It blooms non-stop from early summer through frost with true-blue flowers, each with a tiny yellow-orange eye in the center. Thanks to thick, sturdy stems, the Pugster series offers vastly improved hardiness and winter survival over other types of dwarf butterfly bush.
Top three reasons to grow Pugster Blue butterfly bush:
1. Appealing true-blue flowers add hard-to-find color to any type of garden or landscape.
2. It produces full-sized flowers on a compact, dwarf frame.
3. Thick, sturdy stems ensure better winter hardiness in zone 5 than other dwarf butterfly bush.
Monarda ‘Pardon my Cerise’
Tuck this sweet and petite perennial into the front of your flower border where it will create a colorful edge of dark cherry pink flowers in high summer. Butterflies and hummingbirds adore it!
Salvia ‘Pink Dawn’
I BLOOM for your PLEASURE.
This colorful perennial produces cotton candy pink flower spikes atop the mounded, aromatic foliage. Lovely when planted in drifts. Attracts butterflies and hummingbirds and resists deer and rabbits. Easy to grow in almost any climate in full sun. Drought tolerant but blooms better with average moisture. Cut back after flowering to promote rebloom.
Cupea ‘ Vermillionaire’
Abundant yellow-orange flowers all season long; loves the heat and loved by hummingbirds. Vermillionaire, like all Cuphea is a heat lover and will do best in warm gardens with bright light. Always keep this plant in full sun for best flowering and to avoid it stretching in the shade.
Don’t JUST keep up with the Joneses. LEAPFROG them.
Supertunia Vista petunias are very vigorous, with mounding habits that can reach up to 2 feet in height in the landscape and will trail over the edges of baskets and containers up to 4 feet by the end of the season. They are fantastic landscape plants and are great in large containers, where they function as both fillers and spillers. In garden beds, they will work either in the front or middle of the bed. They have medium-sized flowers.
I can go ALL summer.
Extremely heat tolerant; a brighter purple than Trailing Lavender.
If you are looking for a tough plant it’s hard to beat lantana. Lantana is heat tolerant, uses little to no supplemental water in the landscape, will tolerate less than ideal soils, and usually doesn’t need to be deadheaded. If you are looking for a plant that will thrive on neglect, lantana is the champ.
We have all heard the phrase ‘April Showers bring May Flowers’ but it turns out there are few things we need to do to freshen up our gardens. April is the perfect time for spring clean-up! Starting with simple raking and going for a clean slate in the garden, prune any broken branches, and fix any uneven ground by adding Van Wilgen’s Topsoil or Compost. Next is the all-important new layer of mulch. Mulching is the perfect way to get your garden off to a great start. Not only does it help settle in the roots, but it will provide warmth, hold in moisture, suppress weeds, encourage growth, and make your beds look all around beautiful.
We understand that everyone has their own style when it comes to mulch. Whether it’s the classic look of Black Mulch or Van Wilgen’s favorite Pine Bark Mulch we have one that’s just right for your landscape. Probably the biggest question we get is “how much mulch do I need?”, no problem, visit VANWILGENS.COM click on the mulch tab and we have a handy mulch calculator. Pop in the dimensions of your bed and how thick you would like it and we do the work for you! Would you rather have your mulch delivered? We just made that a little easier for you, you can also order mulch online and schedule delivery right to your home. Easy peasy!
Not quite sure what you are looking for and need a visual to get your creative juices flowing? Our North Branford store has several display gardens for you to walk through, sometimes seeing it in person is just what you need for inspiration. We hope to see you soon!
Jason Scire, Nursery Manager
We love the contrasts and textures of fall foliage. From grasses to trees we have compiled a baker’s dozen of our favorites to see in the autumn landscape. If you don’t see your favorite let us know, we are always interested in what you are planting!
Hydrangea ‘Little Quick Fire’
‘Standing Ovation’ Grass
‘Little Miss’ Miscanthus
‘North Wind’ Panicum
Caring for your hydrangea can make all the difference for next year’s blooms. Hydrangea’s are strong and can come back from almost anything when given enough time and proper care.
Just follow these fall tips for pruning and maintenance. It isn’t complicated.
It is important to identify your variety first because some hydrangea varieties do not like being pruned in the fall.
If your garden has hydrangeas, then you need to know that there are two types of hydrangeas. One type produces flower buds on old wood and the other produces flower buds on new wood. Stems are called old wood if they have been on the plant since the summer before. New wood are stems that develop in the current season. Most varieties found in gardens are old wood bloomers including Mophead, Big Leaf, Lacecap, and Oakleaf hydrangeas. Double check your variety with your local garden center.
When to Prune
Hydrangeas can grow for years without being pruned, but if they get unruly, over take an area of the garden or lose their growing capabilities – it is time to trim. But when to prune them?
Prune fall blooming hydrangeas, or old wood bloomers, after they bloom in the summer. If you prune old wooded hydrangeas in fall, you are cutting off next seasons blooms.
Summer blooming hydrangeas, or those that bloom on new wood, are pruned in the fall, after they stop blooming.
Hydrangeas are colorful and vibrant in the early season, but are hard to preserve after being cut. They are easier to care for after they start drying on the bush.
How to Prune
Near the bottom of your plant, you will see thin, wispy, weak growth. Cut those down. They will take up energy that your plant could use for blooms.
Look for any dead stumps on your stems. They will not have grown any new wood or buds out of the original old wood. Cut the dead stumps down to their base to completely remove them. This will allow the new growth underneath to have a chance to succeed.
Dead and old blooms need to be removed to make room for new buds to come through. Cut the flower head off right above the first few leaves to encourage blooms for the next summer.
Stand back from the plant and observe its shape. You’ll want to prune the shrub into the shape you prefer, a sphere is the typical style but you could prune it into any shape you want!
Clean the Debris
Remove any debris that fell off from the base of the plant. You want to make sure your soil is free of any weeds, leaves and dead flowers.
For the best hydrangea care, feed 2-3 times throughout the growing season, which is from spring until fall.
Follow these few steps and your hydrangeas will be happy and vibrant for years to come.
What will happen with my Hydrangeas this season! That has been the most asked question at the garden center recently. My advice to all…don’t panic. With the recent up and down weather temperatures experienced over the past few weeks, some plants may show effects from it. However, it is too soon to tell. The good news is we should have plenty of time for our plants to bounce back.
Some of you may be asking what I can do now. Now is the time to examine your plants. Pay close attention to the buds. If the buds that began to swell during the warm weather we had in February and early March are still alive chances are they will be fine. If the buds at the tips of the stems have been damaged it will cause the buds below to eventually open with flowers. This is called apical dominance. Please resist the temptation to prune your plants to the ground. This may cause your plants to not flower this year and next. There are so many hydrangeas these days that require different pruning times, I recommend speaking to one of our many knowledgeable staff members to learn how and when to prune. I have also attached an awesome link from our friends at Proven Winners outlining the What, When, and How of Hydrangea care.
Jason Scire, Nursery Manager