Sunday, October 5, 2014

Garden Visits: 9/24/14 Part 1

I'm a little behind with getting this posted, but being busy is the theme of life lately!  On the 24th I headed out for a day of horticultural adventure!

The first stop was the garden of Dave Wanninger.  I know Dave from his time at Beaver Creek Nursery and I've been meaning to visit him and his awesome collection of plants since he moved to Milwaukee.  I wasn't disappointed!

This is the view from Dave's driveway to his front entrance.  He loves all kinds of plants, but has a soft spot for dwarf conifers.  I got to see a lot of plants that I wish I had space for; and some that have been on my wishlist for awhile.

'Fairy Hair' Japanese maple is one of those plants I've wanted since I first saw it listed on a website.  It's not an easy thing to photograph and is MUCH cooler in real life.  Another great dwarf maple in the garden was 'Mikawa Yatsubasa'.  It had a really nice tight habit and the leaves looked great.  The nice thing about these dwarf maples is that they can get tucked in with perennials or larger shrubs.

Acer palmatum 'Mikawa Yatsubasa'

Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Split Rock'
I'm a sucker for nice forms of Chamaecyparis, and Dave had a great specimen of C. obtusa split rock. It's a probably a little big for my gardens, but it's beautiful none the less.  

Dianthus licinata
One of the reasons for this visit was to collect cuttings of Dianthus licinata.  I gave Dave this plant a number of years ago and it's done well for him.  Compared to mine which died out 3 years ago.  This is a very tight alpine species and I didn't have it raised up and it stayed too wet in the spring of '12.  It's a little difficult to root, so hopefully I have some luck again this time around.

Hosta 'Korean Snow'
Another plant group that Dave is fond of is Hosta.  And there were some great ones in the gardens.  Like my own hostas in the gardens, many were starting to look a little tired this late in the season.  He did have a very nice form of 'Korean Snow' that the variegation doesn't seem to fade on.  He also showed me a sport of 'Bridegroom' he found with a white edge.  This is on the market from another source as 'Bachelor Party' and is really a knockout plant!
Hosta 'Bachelor Party'

Heuchera 'Hercules'

Heuchera 'Pinot Gris'
I also spotted a couple of Heuchera that I have in production for next year's catalog.  'Hercules' is a H. sanguinea hybrid with red flowers and variegated foliage in the spring which turns more green through the summer.  'Pinot Gris' is a highly under-rated villosa hybrid; the foliage starts out with hints of burgundy changing to light green with a silver veil.  This is topped by pink flowers.

Epimedium 'Spine Tingler'
The last plant that's on my wish list that I spotted is Epimedium 'Spine Tingler'.  This Epimedium has narrow holly-like foliage that is evergreen.  New growth in spring is chocolate-burgundy and the flowers are light yellow and profuse.  This is a really great plant to add spring color and season long textural contrast to shade gardens.

Dave had a number of other cool plants that I got shots of, pictured below.  I also collected a bunch of seed from various martagon lilies in hopes of growing some interesting mixed hybrid forms.  After that it was time to hit the road for more adventure!
Unknown Japanese Maple

A nice Carex morrowii selection

Pinus mugo

unknown Heuchera

Pinus strobus 'Sea Urchin'

Pinus strobus 'Mini Twists'
Tsuga canadensis 'Snow Fountain'

Sedum cauticola 'Lidakense'

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