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Two exciting new echinaceas

Just wanted to bring you quick look at two dramatic new echinaceas.

Echinaceagreenenvy25912 Green Envy is a breakthrough bicolor – the picture says it all – from event organizer and passionate plantsperson Mark Veeder. This is his first plant introduction, he assessed it in his New York State garden after it turned up in the nearby garden of a friend of his. A dramatic cut flower, and also an intriguing border perennial, I saw it in his garden last year and can’t wait to see it flowering in mine this summer. It’s available from White Flower Farm in the US, though at $29.95 for one plant in a 3in pot the price is a bit steep. In the UK Cotswold Garden Flowers have listed it, along with a large range of other echinaceas, but unfortunately they’re sold out as I write this. I'm sure they, and other nurseries, will have it soon.

Echinaceatikitorch Tiki Torch is the first in this color range from the breeding of Dan Heims at TerraNova Nurseries in Oregon. Derived in part from the tough and impressive ‘Ruby Giant’, it holds its bright orange rays out almost horizontally, and then they fall just slightly creating impact from a sideways view as well as from above.

I haven’t seen the plant in flower yet, just this picture, and I know pictures can sometimes be (how shall I put it) overoptimistic. But Tiki Torch looks as if it might prove to be the best in this color range yet. And Dan was bubbling with enthusiasm for it when I met him last week. So look out for it. Please note that TerraNova Nurseries are wholesale only and do not sell to home gardeners, so please don’t ask them to send you a plant. It should available to home gardeners later this year.

Comments

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carol

Green Envy is stunning! Re the medicinal qualities of Echinacea - any info on which plant you would use in a herb/medicinal garden how you could use it?
carol

Graham Rice

Well, let me quote from the excellent (and independent) American health newsletter Nutrition Action (http://www.cspinet.org/nah/index.htm).

They say, summarizing the research in a report just out: "Taking echinacea regularly won't keep you from getting a cold. But starting it at the first sniffle might help dry up your runny nose or relieve other symptoms. The best evidence is for supplements made from the purpurea strain."

I wouldn't depend on making the supplement at home from garden plants, better to buy a good brand of supplement and look for Echinacea purpurea in the ingredients. Most of the garden varieties are derived from this species so it's easy to grow plants as examples of those from which the treatment is derived.

Joyce Hemingson

Hi Graham: Thought your readers would appreciate knowing that White Flower Farm has the mail-order exclusive on Echinacea 'Tiki Torch' for fall 2007. Plants can be ordered now (item F28479) on www.whiteflowerfarm.com for fall shipment. Joyce Hemingson, Publications Director

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