rare perennials

Grass of Parnassus

In flower now at JLBG is the rarely seen, Southeast native, Parnassia caroliniana. This amazing, but difficult to grow bog perennial begins flowering for us in mid-November. Even more odd than the plant itself, are it’s relatives. It’s a member of the Celastraceae, meaning its cousins include the genus, Euonymus, and the bittersweet vine, Celastrus.

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Tressing Up for the Fall Dance

Here is one of our bog gardens showing off the lovely native Spiranthes bightensis ‘Chadd’s Ford’, wrapping up its flowering in early November. This easy-to-grow native orchid is right at home with sarracenias (pitcher plants) in very moist soils. Despite its popularity in gardens, Spiranthes bightensis has a global rarity rank of G1, meaning it

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Delicate Toadshade

Flowering now in the garden is the delicate toadshade, Trillium delicatum. This diminutive trillium, published in 2019, hails from Central Georgia, where it naturally grows in floodplains. Despite a damp habitat, it has performed beautifully for us, even in average to dry garden soils. This species is quite rare, and is suffering significant damage from

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Mr. Russell’s Mahonia

Mahonias have long been garden staples, but few people have ever seen or tried the rare Mahonia russellii. Discovered in 1984 in Vera Cruz, Mexico by the UK’s James Russell, this member of the “paniculate” clan of mahonias is more closely related to other Southern Mexico and Central American species, than anything most of us

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Calling all Plant Nerds

Just over a month remains before the 2022 Southeastern Plant Symposium kicks off in Raleigh at the Sheraton Hotel, downtown. This joint venture between JLBG/Plant Delights and the JC Raulston Arboretum brings together the top horticultural speakers from around the world to regale attendees with tales of their favorite new plants. Each symposium rotates a

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My Summer Vacation trip to Lambou Field, Florida

Back in the early 2000s, I printed out every exchange from the International Bulb Society email list that discussed the bulb genus, hymenocallis (spider lilies). Most conversations originated with Victor Lambou, who was obviously an authority on the genus. It’s now been years since the Bulb Society went defunct and I had lost track of

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