Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Perennial Pizzazz

Who is excited for Thanksgiving?!  I know I am excited for my father-in-law’s smoked ham and turkey, getting to spend time with my family and the amazing nap from the turkey coma. I have to say that is the best nap that everyone can ever have when you eat too much turkey and your body makes you sleep it off. But, you guys are probably more interested in talking about the new perennials coming in spring.

Echinacea Sombrero Baja Burgundy, Echinacea Sombrero Blanco and Echinacea Sombrero Hot Coral are the new additions to the Sombrero series. You can see in our Reference Guide the basic characteristics of all of the Sombrero series. They are well branched, bright flowers that increases the flower power along with compact foliage. Below are some pictures that I took back in June of the flowers and the branching.

Sombrero Baja Burgundy is above and Blanco is below. Look at the rich colors and these pictures were both with new blooms. You can see in the Blanco picture that was the first of four blooms.

This little beauty above is Sombrero Hot Coral. It will add some amazing color to any landscapes or combination planting in a landscape.

The picture above is the wonderfully colored Penstemon Dark Towers.

I am so excited to be growing these in addition to one of my favorites, Penstemon Husker Red. There are a few differences between the two. The color of the foliage, color of the flowers and the spread of the plantings in the landscapes. Husker Red will stay between 12-18 inches and Dark Towers will spread 18-23 inches in the landscape. Husker Red has reddish purple foliage with white blooms with pinkish tints to the blooms. Dark Towers has a more deep purple foliage and pink with red tinted flowers as you can see from the picture.

The last plant I wanted to talk about is Veronica Pink Eveline. This plant reminds me of a beautiful meadow where the flowers are calm and quiet. I just adore this plant. It is full sun like other veronicas and it could be 18-23 inches tall and about 12-18 inches wide, image courtesy of Perennials.com.

These are just a few plants that I will be growing in spring and there are more to come. Stay tuned for more information about what we are doing to improve our growing cycles and the ways we are trying to give you, our customers, more of what you need. 

Annuals, the newest babies, are being added to the specialty department of plants at Loma Vista. Below are pictures of some of these newest additions to the Loma Vista Family.

The picture above is of the very beautiful Angelonia Serena Purple. It is a full sun plant that is great as cut flowers and can add some extra attention to anyone’s curb appeal. 

This picture above is one of six different combo baskets that we will grow for Spring 2016. This is called Confetti Garden Calypso. It is actually a multi-liner plug. It has three plants per plug so we will be able to give our customers a good overall coverage of color and more importantly flower power.

This little beauty above is Lantana Bandana Red and is as fun to say as it is to look at it. This amazing baby is a powerhouse of a grower and will be wonderful in pots, large planters and even on its own in the landscape.

All of the annuals will be sold at our Olathe LDC and our North Location. We will grow 12 inch hanging baskets for spring. Rescape trays and 5 inch pots of 22 different varieties of annuals will also be in production. It might not seem like much, but we are continuously working to think of the best ways to help our customers by having everything you need to have a successful year with your landscapes.

Now that I have gushed about my new babies, I can still share some news about my original love, perennials. Here in Ottawa, we have wrapped up all of the perennials for the fall season and I am finishing up all of the plans for spring.  We are already planning for their arrival and will have a more in-depth system in 2016 so everyone will know when to expect plants with buds and blooms.   

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Fall Color Options

There are several plant selections for great fall color when it comes to design, landscaping and stocking a garden center. Below are just a few pictures taken at our container farm in the past few weeks. When the blooms are spent, get that additional color pop from the many shrubs and perennials grown by Loma Vista Nursery at our centrally located container farm in the Midwest.

All are welcome to visit our container farm. If that doesn't work for your schedule, we're happy to bring views of the container farm to you.  We have added hundreds of images of the container farm and crops to Flickr.  LVN on Flickr.

Loma Vista container farm


Berberis ‘Gold Pillar’ #3PW

Berberis ‘Orange Rocket’ #3

Chamaecyparis ‘Gold Mop’ #3

Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Lets Dance Moonlight’ #3PW

Euonymus fort Coloratus #1

Sedum ‘Autumn Fire’ #1

Heuchera ‘Caramel’ #1

Panicum virgatum ‘Shenandoah’ #5

Hydrangea quercifolia 'Ruby Slippers' #3

Jeremy Amos, Sales Representative, Loma Vista Nursery

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Winter Preparation for Spring Success

Greetings, my name is Michael Sellars, I am the new production manager for the container division at Loma Vista Nursery.  I have passionately been in the nursery business for the greater part of my adult life, a container grower of trees, shrubs, perennials and annuals for 15 years in Oklahoma, more recently in the Kansas City area. I am excited by the opportunity and proud to be part of a successful team at Loma Vista Nursery.

We draw to a close another growing season in the Midwest. There are many key procedures for winter preparation for our plants that facilitate a successful spring container crop.

Main factors that transition plants into dormancy is the combination of temperature and length of daylight hours. As this transformation occurs, fall cultural practices preceding dormancy will ensure healthy, viable plants for the coming season.

First and foremost, a healthy plant has the best chance to survive the winter.  We have a widespread nutrition program at the nursery to promote plant health, which includes soil incorporated time-released, liquid drench and foliar applied fertilizers.  The objective is to reduce the amount of available nitrogen to the roots of the plant by correctly slowing the release of fertilizer, along with the reduction of heavy irrigation a few weeks prior to the first frost. New flushes of growth during this period will not harden off sufficiently and will be damaged by freezing temperatures. 

Irrigation, as mentioned, can be challenging in the fall. Plants must have enough water to lightly saturate the entire root ball, while avoiding standing water in the bottom of the container which can promote soil borne pathogens and root disease. On the other hand, plants that go into winter under dry conditions have a greatly increased chance for failure from desiccation or drying out. Landscape and nursery plant material must have available water both prior to and following a hard freeze.  Transpiration continues throughout the winter and without available water plants will have a difficult time surviving.

Exposure to wind and intense direct sunlight on a cold day can also be extremely detrimental to plants during the winter months though desiccation. Loma Vista has embarked on a large scale project this fall by constructing an additional 160 temporary cold frame structures (18,000 linear ft.), which when covered with white plastic, will provide protection to our shrubs from these elements.

These are but a few practices that we employ, carried out by our conscientious staff, to bring the very best quality trees and shrubs to the marketplace. We look forward to a continued and successful relationship over the coming months and years.

Thank you.

Mike Sellars, Production Manager, Loma Vista Nursery