Notes from The Gardens at Ball

Being unable to travel to visit customers does have some benefits. I am able to visit The Gardens at Ball in West Chicago as I please, and track the progress of all our great Kieft Seed and Darwin Perennials genetics as they mature and flower throughout the season. So, instead of “Notes from the Road,” I’d like to bring you “Notes from the Gardens!” Below are the best and brightest bloomers of Week 25.

by Chris Fifo

Leucanthemum Madonna
This F1 hybrid Leucanthemum from Kieft Seed offers superb uniformity from seed versus the competition. First-year flowering, it is easy to schedule from seedling plugs to flower late-Spring. Or, if you like, add a little long-day lighting to the program and have these flowering much earlier – especially in the South. This group of Madonna (pictured) was planted last year and just about to come into full flower. A great seed alternative for Leucanthemum!

Heliopsis ‘Sunstruck’
This is one of my favorites that I left behind in my mature gardens when I moved from Iowa. The variegation in the leaves is striking, stunning AND stable. This group was planted in 2017 and is showing off its maturity without a single loss. The earliest flowering Heliopsis with one of the largest flowers.

Iberis ‘Summer Snowdrift’
An Iberis with all-season flower power! This IS a snowdrift of flowers all Summer long. Though not quite as hardy as some other Iberis at Zone 6, this is a no-brainer of an Iberis to schedule for containers because once it starts flowering it doesn’t stop. And it doesn’t make a mess with spent flowers, either. Maybe a great sub for Lobularia in mixed containers? This one loves the Summer heat and humidity.

Achillea New Vintage Violet
An award-winning selection from the New Vintage series. These Achillea fade to shades and not to brown. Not only are the colors bold and the plants compact at 12-14 in., the flower stems are tough. You would never know we’ve had high winds and heavy rain by looking at these.

For more information:
Darwin Perennials
622 Town Road
West Chicago, Illinois 60185-2698
630 231-3600

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