In the spring, we were lucky enough to attend the annual California Spring Trials.  As we mentioned, it is like attending fashion week for the horticultural industry. We get to see new varieties of plants and flowers that are being introduced and improvements made by breeders.  We wanted to highlight some of our favorite new plants that will be available next year.

Here are our hot debut selections:

Midnight Gold Petunia

This new petunia with its unique bi-color flower was really eye-catching. Midnight Gold Petunia flowers have deep-purple double blooms with gold tips. The plant will grow 8-10 inches high and 20-26 inches wide.  The large 2-inch double flowers look great in hanging containers.  Find a location in full sun with rich moist, well-drained organic soil for planting. To encourage new flowers to grow, cut disheveled petunia plants back in the late summer.

Bee Happy Orange Bidens

There have been many Bidens introductions over the past few years. We really liked Bee Happy Orange Biden with its orange flowers and pinwheel yellow center.  The dark green foliage on the plant is a nice contrast to the bright colorful flowers. This flower is long-blooming going from early spring to autumn.  Bee Happy Orange Bidens looks great on its own in a container or flower bed.  They also look wonderful in a large mixed container or hanging basket. Even watering and keeping the soil moist helps this plant thrive.  Bidens are low maintenance and attract bees and butterflies.

Frizzle Sizzle Mini Viola

Have you ever thought of adding some flowers with ruffles to your garden?  Try this new variety of viola with ruffled flowers that are available in violet and yellow and two mixed groupings. One mixed was our favorite. It is called tapestry which has flowers in shades of purple, burgundy, and yellow.  These flowers are cool weather plants so try them in early spring or autumn. Stronger ruffling of flowers occurs in cooler temperatures.  These flowers would be great for containers or in your flower beds.  They are also edible.

Floral Lace Dianthus - Red

This new Dianthus has a rich red-burgundy flower and a pink center. The flower has lacy, serrated petals and measures 1.5 inches across.  Dianthus is a popular bedding plant and will bear a profusion of scented red flowers in spring to summer.  Dianthus can be grown in a cutting flower garden.  This plant performs well under tough conditions including heat.  Grow this plant in full sun and in well-drained soil. The plant is also deer resistant.

Zion Purple Sun Osteospermum

The inspiration for this flower is the Zion National Park in Utah.  This flower has a unique color. This flower has a unique color. For the intense purple center with an orange and yellow ring sunlight and warm conditions are needed otherwise the color stays darker and contains no ring.  You will love that the colors do not fade and the plant has excellent outdoor performance. Purple Sun is sensitive to cold and wet conditions. The plant is perfect for sunny locations in flower beds and on balcony containers. Zion Purple Sun flowers all summer long! The plant grows 18 – 24 inches tall and 16 – 24 inches wide.

Betulia Begonia

This small flowering begonia has been popular in Europe for many years. You will find them on patios and balconies. They are available in four colors, which include bright pink, candy pink, light pink and red.  They have a long flowering season and will bloom from spring until frost.  Betulia Begonias grow best in partial sun.  Avoid full sun to prevent burning damage. No deadheading is needed with this plant.  It is extremely weather tolerant and versatile for use in outdoor or indoor containers. 

Double Orangetastic MiniFamous® Neo Calibrachoa

Calibrachoa plants are one of our favorite annual flowers. We have been growing these flowers for years. There are so many different series of Calibrachoa it is hard to keep track of these days. There are also so many different colors.  Neos are the mid-size MiniFamous® Calibrachoa which are suitable for hanging baskets.  The ‘Double Orangetastic’ is this year’s stand out of the new introductions.   The small double flowers have light orange outer petals with a darker blood orange inner pattern.  These flowers will bloom from spring through autumn. These flowers will look great alone or mixed in combination with other flowers.

Zesty Scarlet Zinnia

This new series of mid-sized zinnias really have some ‘Zest’!   The double bloomed flowers are huge and are available in many bright, cheerful colors. The plants grow 18-24 inches.  Scarlet was our favorite color but these Zinnias are also available in fuchsia, pink, purple, and white.  There is also a mixed variety that includes all of these colors and yellow.  These flowers will look great in your garden either in-ground or in containers.  Pollinators will be covering these flowers all summer long. The flowers bloom from spring through autumn. Plant this beautiful flower in full sun and rich, moist soil.

Let us know if you are thinking of adding any of these flowers to your garden next year.

Photos courtesy of Jill Mazur and Ball Seed Company.

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