CAST Intros for Indies
Chris Beytes, Bill Calkins, Jennifer Zurko & Osvaldo Cuevas
Calibrachoa Illusion, Dracula, Caramel (Westhoff)
Three standalone calibrachoas in such unique colors that they can’t be contained in a series. Illusion is later to flower, with purple-pink blooms. Dracula (pictured) is early to flower with very dark (dare we say blood-red?) centers and fuchsia edges. And Caramel features blooms in pink to yellowish shades.
Rudbeckia August series (Ball Ingenuity)
An R. hirta type that blooms eight weeks from transplant into a gallon. The series starts with four colors: Flame, Glow, Sun and Forest (Forest has GREEN flower petals!).
Petunia Tea (Beekenkamp)
Purple Vein Green Edge and Flamingo are a new pair of unique-colored petunias in Beekenkamp’s Tea series for weather-tolerant containers from 4-in. up to baskets.
Petunia Rimarkable (Danziger)
This petunia’s pattern is different enough that they didn’t want to drop it into any of their existing series, so they made it a standalone. The name aptly describes the wide white rim framing the vibrant violet flowers. The rim is much wider than what you see on their Cascadia Rim Cherry or Rim Violet (both of which have been improved for a more stable rim and better branching).
Dahlia Medio & Grande (Beekenkamp)
Fun Yellow Blush and Fun Flame are both new in Beekenkamp’s mid-sized Medio series, which is intended for 4- to 4.5-in. pots. For the large-pot Grande series, Fun Red White is new for ’22 with huge bicolor red-and-white blooms on an equally large plant. Perfect for gallons and larger pots. (BTW, “Fun” in the name means the flowers are bicolored.)
Cuphea Cubano Cristo (Danziger)
Cuphea is also called cigar flower, hence the variety name. It’s got a burgundy flower and, of course, that cute little mouse face when seen close up. It’s not the most exciting in a mono pot (although it’s a pollinator-attractor), but it would make a good addition to mixed combos, with the long stems poking out through the other plants.
Oenothera Evening Sun (Darwin Perennials)
Here’s one you don’t see at every CAST. Bright yellow flowers bloom above silver-green foliage. Like a typical oenothera it’s really drought tolerant, but it will tolerate wet conditions, as well. Hardy to Zone 5.
Jaldety added some interesting sedums to their collection, such as Royal Pine, with a texture that looks like the tips of pine branches; Gold Dust, a low-growing little chartreuse carpet of softness; and Majestic Kiss, with little lip-shaped foliage (if you look at it closely). Here’s Gold Dust and Majestic Kiss.
Ptilotus Mathilda (Benary)
A much bigger version of the Australian native Ptilotus Joey, which Benary introduced some years ago. Benary’s view was, “Why are we trying to shrink this plant? If it wants to be big and vigorous, let’s make it big and vigorous!” Joey’s wild and crazy big sister can be used in gallons, as a landscape plant or even as a cut flower. In fact, the blooms will last up to 19 days in a vase (provided you strip off the foliage). Much of the beautiful Matilda display was devoted to wedding bouquets featuring the trendy silver-lavender flowers.
Petunia ColorRush Pink Star (Ball FloraPlant)
Pink Star is an addition to this vigorous series of petunias, which is great for combos.
Cyclamen Absolu de Morel (Morel)
A fancy name for a deeply scented cyclamen (which even had a cute perfume bottle hang tag—no word as to if those will be available). They’re bred for a fall finish to help maximize shoulder-season sales. Display a big endcap of these and you’ll knock your customers over!
Coleus MicroBlaze Matchsticks (Ball FloraPlant)
Last year, BFP introduced Spitfire, an extra-small coleus. Matchsticks joins it to begin a collection of micro coleus that will make nice additions to tabletop containers, window boxes and small-space gardens.
Salvia Salgoon Lake series (HilverdaFlorist)
The Salgoon collection includes some awesome varieties that can grow extremely tall, so now they’ve introduced the Lake series of more compact plants. The five colors in the series are all named for famous lakes around the world—Garda, Titicaca, Onega, Baikal and Victoria.
Begonia Bachelorette (Dümmen Orange)
In the shade (or part sun) annual category, Begonia Bachelorette is a standalone interspecific begonia that’s a cross of boliviensis and tuberosa. It’s got loads of flowers held just above the pointy leaves—it’s super tidy. We saw it in combinations and it looks like it “plays well with others,” as we like to say.
Bidens Spicy Electric White, one of three standalone bidens from Kientzler, has blooms that are striking white with a bright yellow center. The other two varieties, Fire Wheel and Tiger Bee, will grab attention at retail, as well.
Lantana Shamrock Butterscotch Glow (Ball FloraPlant)
A nice new yellow for the series, it has a rounded/mounded habit for baskets and containers.
Petunia Fun House (Syngenta)
A circus of unique patterns called Fun House, they started this petunia collection last year with Potpourri and this year added Peach Melba (pink centers with light pink edges), Amethyst Sunshine (yellow throats with purple edges) and Papaya (yellow with light pink edge).
Coleus TrailBlazer (Ball FloraPlant)
Glory Road (left) and Road Trip are the newest trailing coleus from BFP. They work well when combined with vigorous plants.
Viola Magnifiscent Delft Blue (PlantHaven)
The third color in this perennial viola series. It’s a classic viola color, with a nice fragrance and good hardiness to Zone 5. GP
Too see much, much more, be sure to go to our YouTube channel to watch the 30 videos we filmed during CAST.