Variety Central: For The Early Birds

Variety Central: For The Early Birds

Ball Horticultural Co.

The Pansy Pals collection from PanAmerican Seed includes varieties specially selected for their similarity in culture and timing to pansies and allow retailers to offer a more interesting and unique assortment to consumer shoppers. Pansy Pals can be merchandised with shopper-friendly pots, tags and point-of-purchase signage.

Hot Cakes matthiola is a series of four colors and one mixture that produces dwarf plants, making them ideal for small pot production and great for gift plant programs. Outdoors, Hot Cakes varieties grow 15 to 20 inches tall.

‘Mon Amie Blue’ myosotis requires no vernalization, so growers can get the crop to market three to six months earlier. ‘Mon Amie Blue’ boasts dainty, light blue blooms that are sure to turn heads. It grows 6 to 8 inches tall and wide.

There are four new selections in the Panola multiflora pansy series for 2008: Deep Blue With Blotch, Deep Orange, Purple and Clear Mixture Select.

Matrix pansies are bred to look better at retail. New ‘Matrix Morpheus’ is a breakthrough color: each bloom shows off a vibrant blue cap complemented by yellow lower petals and eye-appealing whiskering. ‘Matrix Red Wing’ is another new addition for 2008.

The Madeira argyranthemum series is early-flowering and great for spring programs; consumers will love the full, floriferous plants. New for 2008 are Crested Merlot, Cherry Red, Deep Pink, Frosted Pink and Pink. It grows 8 to 12 inches tall.


Myosotis is a great plant for mixed container combinations for early spring sales as an accent perennial to highlight the more showy spring flowers. The Sylva mix is available in three separate colors: Blue, Snow and Rose.

Like a beacon of spring, Arabis ‘Snowfix’ blankets the garden with large masses of small white flowers. A FastraX perennial, ‘Snowfix’ flowers the first year from seed, and is the perfect complement to spring containers, making it a must- have spring item.

Deep, glossy green leaves and the airy flower plumes of the Astary astilbe series add elegance to any setting.  Offered in three separate colors and a formula mix, Astary offers growers an attractive pot crop perfect for Valentine’s Day and Easter sales. 

Goldsmith Seeds

The Asti osteospermum series is perfect for early spring, bred to be both cold and heat tolerant. This award-winning beauty blooms nearly year-round in mild climates with big, daisy flowers and eyecatching, full plants.


The Plants that Work in Nooks & Crannies program, designed for multiple garden applications, promises to be an exciting draw at retail. With more than 300 plants that grow to 12 inches or less, the collection is hardy to Zones 3 to 10.

Plants that Work by Color brings world-class genetics to gardeners in a rainbow of color and form. In spring 2008, the program will offer year-round color, with more than 150 varieties.

The Commotion gaillardia series shows strong hybrid vigor with a manageable, mounding habit, and flowers have a semi-double appearance. Both varieties ‘Tizzy’ and ‘Frenzy’ are hardy to Zone 5 and reach 24 inches tall in full sun.

Philadelphus ‘Snow White Sensation’ is a deciduous shrub with a graceful, fountain-like habit and snow white blooms of the sweetest fragrance. A repeat flowering new hybrid, 2-inch double flowers bloom abundantly in spring and summer. Hardy to Zones 5-8, it reaches 6 feet in height.

‘Pink Double Knockout’ rose offers disease resistance and an abundance of double, hot-pink flowers. Hardy to Zones 4-9, it reaches a height and width of 4 feet and does not require deadheading.

A blooming machine, weigela ‘Shining Sensation’ has pink, funnel-shaped flowers that engulf the plant in May and June, and throughout summer. Shiny, burgundy foliage offers season-long color. Hardy to Zones 5-8, ‘Shining Sensation’ is a fast-growing shrub that reaches 6 feet tall.

Plant Haven

The Whetman Star series of alpine dianthus has attractive, compact, mounding foliage that looks great in mass plantings. Hardy to Zone 4, the Star series produces excellent, uniform, early spring crops.

Helleborus ‘Ivory Prince’ has prolific ivory flowers flushed with pink and streaked with green and rose hues that deepen with time. The outward-facing, long-lasting blooms appear in late winter to early spring. It is hardy to Zone 5.

Proven Winners

Spring Magic is unique because it delivers early season color to gardeners and early season profits to growers and retailers. This program provides 36 cold-tolerant, flowering and component varieties that can be enjoyed as much as two months earlier than most spring plants. These varieties are the answer for both retailers and gardeners who are anxious for something new and colorful.

Yoder Brothers

The Helleborus Gold Collection offers a sales window for two varieties in spring flowering potted plants – ‘HGC Silver Moon’ and ‘HGC Green Corsican.’ An ideal Inside Out plant, consumers can enjoy helleborus as an indoor potted plant, then move it outdoors to enjoy in the garden.

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