What’s in Bloom A thru C


Abelia Hybrids: Rose Creek and Canyon Creek

Rose Creek Abelia, fall

Rose Creek Abelia, mid-summer

How many shrubs growing in your garden are smothered in flowers from mid-summer through late fall?  Not many, we suspect.

Two new hybrid abelias – Rose Creek and Canyon Creek – are star quality shrubs for their foliage and flowers.  One can hardly walk past them in the Linnaeus Teaching Garden without pausing to admire the massive number of tiny, cream-colored flowers that virtually hide the foliage.  Bees and butterflies are similarly attracted to these outstanding evergreen shrubs.

These hybrid abelias are excellent foundation plants for continuous seasonal change beneath windows, or to use with a mixed shrub border or as a low hedge. Plant them in full sun to partial sun.  Height and width: 3 to 4 feet.

Canyon Creek Abelia, October

Canyon Creek Abelia, October

Location: Entry Garden and along the lower Boulder Garden (2018)



Agapanthus Midnight Blue

Agapanthus Midnight Blue

Agapanthus are South African plants with strap-like leaves and showy flowers in shades of blue, violet or white. They’re ideal for growing in containers, from which their pretty blooms stand tall, spilling over other pots.

Agapanthus Midnight Blue is a compact agapanthus, making it the perfect choice for growing in containers and small gardens. It bears trumpet-shaped, very dark blue flowers in mid- to late summer.

For best results grow Agapanthus Midnight Blue in a sheltered, sunny spot, in moist but well-drained soil. In exposed areas protect from frost in winter, or move potted plants indoors in autumn.

Location:   Entry Garden near the Linnaeus statue (2018)


Ajuga, Chocolate Chip

Chocolate Chip Ajuga, late March

Chocolate Chip Ajuga, late March

Chocolate Chip Ajuga is a low growing ground cover that offers both fetching foliage and showy flowers. Its narrow leaves are enticing shades of plum and chestnut. When not in bloom, Chocolate Chip Ajuga may be walked on with no fear of damaging its foliage.

Three inch spikes of frothy blue blossoms are produced in spring and sometimes reoccur in milder climates. Set against the darker leaves, these blue flowers really pop. This is a fast growing favorite that spreads rapidly by runners and makes a mat of dense, dark green foliage.

Chocolate Chip is a dwarf form that grows just 2-3 inches high but spreads up to 3 feet wide. Count on it to crowd out those pesky weeds. This plant will adapt to almost any garden or landscape locale.

Location:  Boulder Garden (2018)


Amaryllis, Hardy

Hardy Red Amaryllis

Hardy Red Amaryllis

Of all flowering bulbs, amaryllis are the easiest to bring to bloom.  This can be accomplished indoors or out, and over an extended period of time.  The amaryllis originated in South America’s tropical regions and has the botanical name Hippeastrum.  The large flowers and ease with which they can be brought to bloom make amaryllis popular and in demand worldwide.  The amaryllis comes in many beautiful varieties including various shades of red, white, pink, salmon and orange.  There are also many striped and multicolored varieties, usually combining shades of pink or red with white.

Hardy Amaryllis, is also known as Texas Red Amaryllis or Saint Joseph’s Lilly.  Unlike many other species, is in fact cold hardy in Oklahoma.

Location: Boulder Garden (2017)


Amsonia, Bluestar

Bluestar is a perennial wildflower found in wooded areas and on river banks from New Jersey to Tennessee to Texas, and they are popular garden plants as well.

Blooming in May and June, each flower has five pale blue flower petals and blooms in clusters on two to three-foot stems. The upright stems with narrow leaves are attractive all summer and turn a beautiful butterscotch-yellow in the fall.

Location:  Boulder Garden (2017)


Angelonia or Summer Snapdragon

Angelonia is also known as Summer Snapdragon. But unlike real snapdragons that only bloom for a month or two in early spring, angelonia loves our summer heat. It flowers best when temperatures top 90 degrees.

Early varieties of angelonia were poor performers with few blossoms and leggy stems. But talented plant breeders like Proven Winners have turned angelonia into one of the finest heat-loving, disease-resistant annuals. Newest varieties come in shades of pink, white, lavender, and indigo. They are more compact and cover themselves with flowers from June-October. They are both tough and beautiful.

Angelonias in containers make full-blooming specimen plants that are great for the patio and yard. Planted in the landscape, they wow gardeners. The flower stems are great for making vase arrangements that provide enjoyment for 10 days or more.

Location:  Boulder Garden and other locations (2017)

Arborvitae, Fire Chief Globe

Fire Chief Globe Arborvitae is nearly perfectly globe-shaped shrub with fine, bright gold spring foliage and fantastic deep red fall color. This sport of the popular Rheingold variety has deeper color and is less prone to splitting. A slow growing, low maintenance evergreen perfect for massing in a landscape foundation or as a rock garden specimen.


Location: Entry Garden, east side (2018)


Aster, Raydon’s Favorite

Aster oblongifolia, aromatic aster, is a dependable herbaceous perennial that displays a wonderful fall flower show. If you depend on pots of mums and pansies to color your perennial garden in the fall, you’re missing out on a great show of color that this aster will provide.

It is just reaching peak bloom in our butterfly garden, and it is simply magnificent. One can hardly see any foliage for the massive coverage of rich blue flowers and the leaves have a pleasant minty fragrance when crushed.

If you want to mimic this look for your landscape, most medium to large growing asters should have their succulent spring growth pinched or sheared back several times before July 4th. Pinching off lush early growth will cause asters to branch and produce thick, stout branching and maximum fall blooms.

Location: Butterfly Garden and Boulder Garden along the stairs (2017)


Aster, Tatarian

Aster Tataricus, the goliath of the asters, is an upright growing variety that can easily reach five to six feet in height and three feet wide.

One of the latest bloomers, this aster explodes with lavender-blue, yellow eyed blossoms in flat clusters, each flower the size of a half dollar which is easily supported by its stiff upright growth. Asters are good nectar plants attracting butterflies and bees.

Location: Butterfly, Boulder, and Fountain Gardens.(2018)


Azalea, Encore, Autumn Carnation, Autumn Cheer

Autumn Carnation, October

Autumn Carnation, October

If you love Azaleas in the spring, how about in summer and fall?  You will be amazed with Encore Azaleas, many varieties of which can be found throughout the Linnaeus Teaching Garden.  They offer little maintenance and big color with blooms throughout the the year.

Autumn Cheer, late March

Autumn Cheer, late March

Autumn Carnation and Autumn Cheer have exceptional flower quality, color, and lustrous dark green foliage which make these varieties excellent landscape additions. Encore Azaleas are easy to grow, and they adapt to most conditions. They prefer slightly acidic well drained soils and require once a year feeding of a slow release fertilizer.

After the spring blooming period, these amazing azaleas begin growing new shoots and start blooming into full flower in mid-summer.  As late as October they are still blooming beautifully in many areas of the Linnaeus Garden.

Location:  Entry Garden (2017)


Azalea, Encore, Autumn Sunset

The Encore are hybrid varieties that are repeat bloomers meaning they can flower for up to nine months in some regions. Autumn Sunset gives you vivid orange-red blooms, a color similar to that of a spectacular fall sunset. Deep green foliage and sizzling auburn flowers combine to create eye-popping splendor.

Flowering as early as March, your Autumn Sunset gets a jump start on many garden bloomers. Then, just when other blossoms are withering, your azalea is ready to go again, developing new shoots and growing buds which will add color through the summer.

Encore Autumn Sunset is an evergreen, upright and rounded shrub that can endure more sun than a traditional azalea. Easy to care for, this beauty is adaptable to almost any soil.

Location:  Entry Garden (2017)


Baptisia, Yellow

Baptisia sphaerocarpa, commonly called false indigo (or yellow wild indigo) is an upright, mounded perennial that typically grows 2-3’ tall. It features small, yellow, pea-like flowers (to 1/2” long) in erect racemes (to 12-15”) atop yellowish-green flower stems extending well above a foliage mound of clover-like, trifoliate, blue-green leaves (leaflets to 2” long). Blooms in spring. Flowers give way to inflated spherical seed pods (to 3/4” diameter) that turn tan to brown when ripe and have considerable ornamental interest. Stems with seed pods are valued additions to dried flower arrangements.

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Best in full sun. Tolerates drought and poor soils. Over time, plants form slowly expanding clumps with deep and extensive root systems, and should not be disturbed once established. Difficult to grow from seed and slow to establish. Plants take on more of a shrubby appearance and tend to open up after bloom. Trimming or shearing foliage after bloom helps maintain rounded plant appearance and obviates any need for staking, but eliminates some of the developing seed pods which are so attractive.

Location: Boulder Garden (2018)



Beautyberry is a deciduous shrub noted for its brightly colored, tightly clustered berries that remain on the bush into winter. Other common names are American beautyberry and American mulberry.

Beautyberry provides food and cover for birds and deer. Small amounts are suggested for human consumption. The plant can slowly grow to 6 feet in light to no shade.

Location:  East of Visitor’s Center (2015)



Yellow Bird of Paradise Shrub – caesalpinia gilliesii

Bird of Paradise Shrub is a fine-textured shrub with large exotic yellow flowers and striking long red stamens. It is wonderful to use as an informal specimen or to plant in groups as a textural hedge or screen.  This high-heat tolerant shrub adds superb color with minimal care.  It often remains semi-evergreen in mild winter regions.

Bird of Paradise Shrub  is a large, open, moderate-growing shrub which reaches 4 to 6 feet tall and wide.  Once the shrub is established, water it occasionally, more often in extreme heat or if in a container. It loves full sun.

Location: Butterfly garden (2018)


Blackberry Lily (Belcomanda chiensis)

The name comes from the clusters of shiny black seeds that are exposed when the seed pods burst open. Grown from a bulb, it’s a member of the iris family not the lily. The fan shaped leaves will reach 2-3 feet in height.

Location:  Boulder Garden (2018)


Brugmansia, Angel’s Trumpets

Brugmansia is a genus of six species of flowering plants that are known as Angel’s Trumpets. Brugmansia are large shrubs or small trees, reaching heights of 3–11 m, with tan, slightly rough bark. The leaves are alternate, generally large, 10–30 cm long and 4–18 cm broad, with an entire or coarsely toothed margin, and are covered with fine hairs.

The name Angel’s Trumpet refers to the large, very dramatic, pendulous trumpet-shaped flowers, up to 20 inches long and 10–35 cm across at the wide end. They are white, yellow, pink, orange or red, and have a delicate, attractive scent with light, lemony overtones, most noticeable in early evening.

Brugmansia’s are easily grown in a moist, fertile, well-drained soil, in full sun to part shade, in frost-free climates. They begin to flower in mid to late spring in warm climates and continue into the fall, often continuing as late as early winter in warm conditions. In cool winters, outdoor plants need protection, but the roots are hardy and will re-sprout in April or May.

Location:  Herb Garden (2017)


Brunnera, Dawson’s White

Dawson's White Brunnera, April

Dawson’s White Brunnera, April

This plant is intolerant of dry soils and prefers constantly moist soils in shady areas that are protected from strong winds. White leaf edges scorch easily from hot sun and winds.  It does well in the dappled-shade of our Entry Garden.

Brunnera freely self-seeds. It is a clump-forming, rhizomatous perennial which features small, blue, forget-me-not-like flowers in airy, branched racemes rising to 18″ tall in spring.

Location:  Entry Garden (2018)


Burning Bush

This shrub is one of the great beauties of the autumn season.

It is distinguished by vibrant scarlet foliage and small red-orange fruit in the fall as well as unusual corky “wings” which flare out along its branches. It is effective used in mass plantings, in a shrub border, as an accent plant or as a neat attractive hedge.

It is not fussy about soil requirements and there are no significant pest problems. It also transplants very easily. Burning bush is truly a maintenance free shrub.

Location:  Boulder Garden against the fence and in other locations  (2017)



Butterfly Bush, White

Butterfly Bush (Buddleja Davidii) is a deciduous shrub that is native to thickets on mountain slopes, limestone outcrops, forest clearings and rocky stream banks in China. It typically grows to 6-12’ (less frequently to 15’) tall with a spread to 4-15’ wide when not killed back by cold winter temperatures. It is noted for its bushy habit, arching stems, showy/fragrant flowers and vigorous growth.

Spike-like terminal and axillary flower clusters bloom from early to late summer, sometimes to first frost. Flowers are densely clustered in showy cone-shaped panicles from 6-18” long. In the wild, straight species flowers are lilac to purple with orange-yellow throats. Numerous named cultivars have been introduced over the years, expanding the range of flower colors to include pinks, yellows, whites and reds. Flowers (each to ½” long) are mildly fragrant, and, as the common name suggests, very attractive to butterflies. Flowers are also very attractive to hummingbirds and bees. Flowers give way to two-valved seed capsules that split open when ripe (about 50 seeds per capsule). Finely toothed, elliptic to lanceolate leaves (6-10” long) taper to long points. Leaves are sage green above and white tomentose beneath.

Location: Butterfly Garden (2018)



Camassia, Quamash ‘Cusickii’

This is a bulb from the damp meadows in North America. They produce tall, branched flower spikes bearing large, starry or cup-shaped flowers, in shades of blue, purple or white. Camassia bulbs have been an important food staple for native North American Indians.

Camassia cusickii has pale blue flowers and pale wavy-edged leaves.

Location:  Boulder Garden (2015)


Castor Bean

Castor Bean plants originated in Ethiopian Africa, have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs, and have naturalized in warm climates worldwide.

If the seeds are chewed by animals or humans, poisonous toxins trigger severe diarrhea and dehydration which can cause death. Keep children and pets away from these plants. Some people say you can plant castor beans to keep moles out of your yard.

Location:  Vegetable Garden (2014)


Catmint, ‘Walker’s’

Walker’s catmint is famous for its wonderful fragrance that butterflies, bees and cats love.

Beautiful, lush, purple flower spikes start to appear in early summer and continue for up to 3 months. Walker’s catmint is excellent for cascading off walls or container edges and as a ground cover that is somewhat drought resistant with time. It’s a great perennial to add to your garden.

Location:  Herb Garden (2017)



Chamomile or camomile is the common name for several daisy-like plants of the family Asteraceae that are commonly used to make herb infusions to serve various medicinal purposes. Popular uses of chamomile preparations include treating hay fever, inflammation, muscle spasm, menstrual disorders, insomnia, ulcers, gastrointestinal disorder, and hemorrhoids.

As a popular remedy, Chamomile may be thought of as the European counterpart of the Chinese tonic Ginseng.

Only the little daisy-like flowers are used when making tea or other herbal concoctions whereas with most herbs, the leaves are used.

Location:  Herb Garden (2017)


Chinese Indigo, Pinkflower

Chinese Indigo Pinkflower, April

Chinese Indigo Pinkflower, April

This deciduous shrub grows well in our area. It bears erect racemes of pea-like, pink flowers from summer to early fall above leaves composed of several leaflets.

The flowers are followed by long, dark purple seed pods. In colder climates this shrub may die back to the ground, re-sprouting from the base in spring. Provide full sun and moist, well-drained soil in USDA Hardiness Zones 6 to 9. Prune out wayward and crossing branches in spring.

Location:  Fountain Garden (2018)


Chocolate Flower

Waking up to the smell of chocolate in the morning is one of the benefits of having this plant near the deck or other seating area to fully enjoy the fragrance.

Chocolate scented daisies bloom at night offering a cocoa scent in the morning. The cheery yellow petals are striped red on the undersides and drop to reveal bright green calyxes above the fiddle-shaped leaves.

Plant the chocolate scented daisy in a full to part sun location. It is a perennial so it needs pruning to keep it looking its best.

Location:  Herb Garden along with other pleasant-smelling herbs such as lavender, lemon basil, and rosemary (2017)


Chokeberry (Aronia), Red

If you want a plant that has a different look with each season, Red Chokeberry is a must in your landscape. Small white fragrant flowers are displayed in April. They are followed by waxy bright green leaves in summer that turn brilliant scarlet in the fall.

This is a medium-size, upright, deciduous shrub 6 to 8 feet in height with an open growth habit and a round top. It is effective when used in groupings of three to five or as a single accent shrub near a garden entry.

Red Chokeberry  produces loads of deep red berries in early summer that last well into late winter.  It prefers full sun or light shade.

Location:  Herb Garden and in the Boulder Garden near the greenhouse (2018)


Clematis, Jackmanii

This classic Clematis is considered by many to be the truest and most beautiful of all and has been loved by gardeners for more than 100 years. It is an absolute spectacle of masses of Royal Purple blooms for 4 full months (June through September). This is a Clematis you want to blanket your fences and outbuildings because it eventually reaches 12 to 30 feet high and 4 to 5 feet wide – it is not a plant for the mailbox.

The blooms are excellent for cutting – just float them in a bowl of water for a lovely table centerpiece. It is best planted in light (not deep) shade, such as that provided by high canopies of tree branches.

Location:  Fountain Garden (2017)


Clematis, Nelly Moser Hybrid

Nelly Moser Hybrid Clematis, April

Nelly Moser Hybrid Clematis, April

This Clematis has enormous flowers, 8 to 9 inches across, which completely cover the vines from May through frost. Its vivid colors

make the blossoms look tropical, but clematis is tough and hardy and is nearly carefree once established.

It requires a support and climbs 8 to 12 feet. Like all other Clematis it does best when planted in full sun with roots shaded.

Location: on the archway between the Vegetable and Fountain Gardens (2017)


Ruby Road

The Main Street series boasts bright colored Coleus that work in sun and shade. Compact and well-branched, they are great for containers and as border and bedding plants. They have been selected to be weather tolerant and late to flower, and are uniform in vigor and size, so mix and match for your garden display.

Chartres Street


Location: Entry Garden (2018)

Coneflower, Henry Eilers

Henry Eilers Coneflower is a sweet coneflower cultivar that typically grows to 3-5’ tall on stiff, upright, leafy stems. It was found growing in the wild in a railroad prairie remnant in Montgomery County, Illinois. The flowers’s yellow rays are rolled instead of flat, giving the flower a quilled effect. The center disks are dome-shaped, and bloom in clusters atop strong, sometimes-branching stems from July to September. Dark gray-green leaves (3-6” long) have a mild sweet aroma. The cultivar was discovered by Henry Eilers, a well-known nurseryman in southern Illinois, and was introduced by Larry Lowman of Ridgecrest Nursery and Gardens in Wynne, Arkansas in 2003.

Location:  Fountain Garden (2017)


Corabell Varieties

Crème brulee in dappled shade, March

Crème brulee in dappled shade, March

Previously enjoyed mainly for their spires of dainty reddish flowers, coralbells are now grown as much for their dramatic foliage and unusually-colored leaves.  They add interest all season, especially in early spring when there is little color in the garden.

Crème brulee offers lovely bronze foliage from spring through fall.   Leaves emerge with a rusty color and mature to tan and olive green.  Its flowers are insignificant.

Obsidian has stunning black, shiny leaves, April.

Obsidian has stunning black leaves, April.

Obsidian has stunning black, shiny, rounded leaves that hold their color all season.  Plant it in groups or masses to intensify its effect.  Or pair it in pots with contrasting companions.

Coralbells grow naturally in wooded areas, so when planting them in the garden, mimic these growing conditions by placing them in dappled shade.  Their low-growing, mounding habit makes them good additions to a woodland or natural garden.

Location:  Entry Walk (2018)


Cotton and Sorghum

Naturally-colored red cotton growing in a container.

Have you thought about using vegetable plants as a decorative planting on your patio that would be a great conversation starter? Cotton and Sorghum would meet that criteria.

These two plants normally have two totally different purposes; in addition to being crop plants, they are also used by farmers as rotation plants to increase the yield for each plant.

The cotton plant is generally a shrubby plant having broad three-lobed leaves and seeds in capsules or bolls; each seed is surrounded with downy fiber, white or creamy in color and easily spun. Imagine explaining to your children or grandchildren how their t-shirts are made from this plant.

New for 2016: We have a naturally-colored cotton plant growing in a container in our Vegetable Garden – Red Cotton!

Naturally-colored cotton is cotton that has been bred to have colors other than the yellowish off-white typical of modern commercial cotton fibers. Colors grown include red, green and several shades of brown. When the boles actually open, the cotton tends to be a rather washed out shade of one of the colors. The cotton’s natural color does not fade. Yields are typically lower and the fiber is shorter and weaker than the more commonly available “white” cotton.

This form of cotton may feel softer to the skin and has a pleasant smell. Naturally-colored cotton is still relatively rare because it requires specialized harvest techniques and facilities, making it more expensive to harvest than white cotton. By the 1990s most indigenous colored cotton landacres or cultivars grown in Africa, Asia and Central and South America were replaced by all-white, commercial varieties (source: Wikipedia).


The Sorghum plant is a genus of numerous species of grasses, some of which are raised for grain and many of which are used as fodder plants either cultivated or as part of a pasture. Researching these plants can give you a lot of material to use for great conversations along with providing you with a very different and interesting plant to watch as it matures.

Location: Vegetable Garden (2016)


Crape Myrtle, Acoma

Tulsa’s summer heat is a natural for growing crape myrtles, and their showy flowers really make any landscape in the dead of summer jump out with wonderful color. The semi-dwarf, slightly weeping growth habit of an Acoma give it an especially graceful appearance.

Along with its modest size (9 feet tall and 11 feet wide) and clusters of pure white flowers, this crape myrtle can brighten any special spot in a landscape. It provides abundant summer color with a minimum of maintenance, withstands droughts after becoming established, and is relatively free of disease and insect difficulties. Because of these features, crape myrtles should be used more often in the home landscape.

Location:  Entry Garden (2017)


Crape Myrtle, Double Feature

Double Feature is the latest sterile and re-blooming crape myrtle to be patented and released by Lacebark Inc. It begins spring growth with small wine-red leaves, and then the flower show begins in late June and continues into October.

The greatest feature is that each panicle of blooms opens, petals drop cleanly as the flowers age, then a new set of flower buds form on the same panicle. There are no seed capsules produced, therefore the plant has a constant flower show.

Double Feature is a semi-dwarf that fits many landscape applications – it is larger than some of the dwarf crape myrtles yet smaller than tree forms. It is highly resistant to powdery mildew and leaf spot disease.

Location:  Driveway by Entry Garden (2018)


Crape Myrtle, Dwarf

Orchid Cascade

Orchid Cascade Dwarf Crape Myrtle is great plant if you want to bring big color into a small space.

This unique, compact plant has lovely orchid-lavender flowers that cascade down to the ground in summer. It only grows 12 to 16 inches tall and spreads 3 to 4 feet wide.

Orchid Cascade can be planted as a low-growing hedge, and it works well in both formal and informal landscapes. You can use it as an accent, in borders, or for container gardening.

Crape Myrtle is easy to grow and needs full sun and well-drained soil. Nothing can compare to the heat-loving crape myrtle that gives us blooms from mid-summer on.

Location:  at the foot of the Boulder Garden near where the east and west walking paths converge. (2017)


Pocomoke is a unique dwarf-size, multi-stemmed shrub with panicles of dark rosy pink flowers that bloom throughout the summer. The dark green foliage turns rich bronze-red in fall. Cold hardy. Use as accent, in containers or massed in borders.

Location: outside the west barn door along the driveway. (2018)



Croton is a tropical plant that can be used as an annual in the garden or in a display planter, and it comes in an amazing diversity of leaf shapes and colors. It has rather thick evergreen alternate leaves, tiny inconspicuous star-shaped yellow flowers that hang down in long racemes, and a milky sap that bleeds from cut stems. Depending on the cultivar, the leaves may be ovate to linear, entire to deeply lobed, and variegated with green, white, purple, orange, yellow, red or pink. The colors may follow the veins or the margins or they may be in blotches on the leaf.

Location:  Entry Garden and Boulder Garden (2017)



Cryptomeria Black Dragon

Light green spring growth matures to deep black-green in summer and forms a dense, irregular pyramid. An interesting evergreen specimen suitable for a wide range of landscape styles including Asian and formal English gardens. Works well for smaller spaces and large container plantings.

Location: Herb Garden in a pot (2018)


More What’s In Bloom: WIB A-C WIB D-H WIB I-Q WIB R-Z