2010 Selections Announced by Plant Select, Colorado State University

Note to Reporters: To view and download high resolution images of the 2010 Plant Select offerings, go to www.plantselect.org, click on “Press Area” then enter the case-sensitive password “salvia”. The photos are under “2010 images”.

Plant Select, a collaborative effort of Colorado State University, Denver Botanic Gardens, and regional and national horticultural professionals, has announced seven new plants for 2010.

Plant Select’s goal is to seek and distribute the best plants for landscapes in the High Plains and Intermountain regions. To be included in the program, selected plants should have these attributes:

• Thrive in a broad range of garden situations
• Be resilient to the region’s challenging climate
• Demonstrate disease and insect resistance
• Flourish in low-water conditions
• Be noninvasive
• Display a long season of beauty in the garden
• Exemplify the unique

This year’s picks:

• Prairie Lode sundrops is a vigorous prairie species that blooms for months with four-petalled, bright yellow blossoms. It tolerates a wide range of situations and thrives in hot, dry conditions. This perennial grows 6 to 8 inches tall and 12 to 15 inches wide. It blooms from May to September, grows in full sun to part shade and is hardy in USDA zones 3 to 9 (up to 9,000 feet).

• Red feathers is a perennial consisting of a basal tuft of dark green, linear leaves which produce spikes of feathery, russet-red flowers in spring, re-blooming again in summer if deadheaded. Red feathers grow 10 to 16 inches tall and 6 to 8 inches wide in full sun or part shade with moderate to xeric soil conditions. It is hardy in USDA zones 3 to 9 (up to 9,000 feet).

• Snow mesa buckwheat produces domes of glistening white flowers that turn a fawn color over a period of months in fall. It grows 18 to 20 inches tall and 18 to 24 inches wide and adds garden color from August to November. It grows best in full sun and is hardy in USDA zones 4 to 9 (up to 8,000 feet).

• Red yucca has arching, evergreen grass-like leaves with curly white filaments. Tall spikes of brilliant rose-pink, yellow-throated tubular blossoms curve skyward. Red yucca is virtually maintenance-free and xeric once established. It will get to be 3 to 4 feet tall and 3 to 4 feet wide and blooms from June to autumn. It prefers full sun and is hardy in USDA zones 5-10 (up to 5,800 feet).

• Regal torchlily has blue-green rosettes of foliage. By late summer, crimson, golden and ivory torches develop that create a focal point. Regal torchlily grows to 40 inches tall and 24 to 30 inches wide, blooming from late July to September. It prefers full sun or part shade in loamy soils. It is hardy in USDA zones 4b to 9 (up to 7,000 feet).

• RedLeaf rose is a medium to large shrub rose with single blossoms ranging from a pastel pink to white. It’s also grown for the persistent red hips and its dark purple foliage color. Redleaf rose grows 6 to 8 feet tall and 4 to 6 feet wide, blooming in May and June. It prefers full sun to part shade and is hardy in USDA zones 3 to 9 (up to 9,000 feet).

• Partridge feather is a groundcover with silver mats of feathery foliage. It thrives on dry gardens with good drainage. Golden button flowers appear for a short time in summer. Partridge feather grows 3 to 5 inches tall and 15 to 24 inches wide, blooming in June. It prefers full sun to part shade, but will not tolerate wet or humid conditions. It is hardy in USDA zones 4 to 9 (up to 8,000 feet).

Many of this year’s selections are warm-season plants and thus may not be available in local nurseries until May or June. Plant Select plants are carried in Colorado by most nurseries.

For more information, visit www.plantselect.org.