quality seeds from
Annuals for 2005
are the All America Selections winners for 2005. Alas,
there are no bedding plant winners this year.
for young plants available at local garden centers in
spring. Links are provided for seeds available
online. Check back to see if additional suppliers will
aristata ‘Arizona Sun’
aristata ‘Arizona Sun’ Flower Award Winner
This ‘Arizona Sun’ is red and yellow. Each three-inch
single flower is mahogany red with bright yellow petal edges.
The bright colors are similar to the desert sun in Arizona.
Like many annuals, plants produce flowers continuously. Even
the spent blooms are attractive as tufts of seed. When grown
in a full-sun garden, ‘Arizona Sun’ is a compact plant
reaching only 8 to 10 inches tall, spreading about 10 to 12
inches. Gaillardia aristata a.k.a. blanket flower, is native
to the Great Plains and usually considered a perennial. ‘Arizona
Sun’ performed as an exceptional plant the first year grown
from seed. This AAS Winner may over-winter, depending upon the
severity of winter. ‘Arizona Sun’ flowers can be cut and
used for summer bouquets. They may attract butterflies to the
garden in search of nectar.
An outstanding variety, which often flowers in the first year
from sowing. Mid-height plants produce masses of fiery red
blooms surrounded by a ring of rich flame yellow. Can be used
as annual bedding, or year after year as a perennial.
Excellent for beds and borders.
Instructions: Sow February to April. Germinate at
20-30C (68-86F) on the surface of a good free draining, damp
seed compost. Do not cover the seed. Place in a propagator or
seal container inside a polythene bag until after germination
which usually takes 14-21 days. Do not exclude light, as this
Instructions: Transplant seedlings when large enough to
handle into trays or 7.5cm (3in) pots. Grow on in cooler
conditions for 10-15 days before planting out after all risk
of frost, 30cm (12in) apart.
Instructions: Prefers a well drained soil in full sun
or semi shade.
'First Kiss Blueberry'
for Plants in Spring Thompson
‘First Kiss Blueberry’ Flower Award Winner
The first blue-flowered Catharanthus rosea is an AAS
Winner named ‘First Kiss Blueberry.’ The large 2-inch
single blooms have a darker eye which accentuates the violet
blue color. For decades breeders have been diligently
working towards a blue Vinca. Now ‘First Kiss Blueberry’
fills the color void. Gardeners will look for ‘First Kiss
Blueberry’ plants to add to their collection. Proven to be
heat and drought tolerant, mature plants will be about 11
inches tall and spread 16 inches, given adequate growing
conditions. Easy to grow from plants, ‘First Kiss
Blueberry’ can be grown in patio containers or combination
These dwarf free-flowering bushy plants have excellent
weather tolerance, even in cool wet conditions. Ideal for
adding color to containers on a sunny patio.
Instructions: Sow February to March. Sow in pots or
trays of moist seed compost and cover with a very light
sprinkling of compost or vermiculite. Place in a
propagator or warm place, and keep at a constant
temperature of between 24-27C (75-80F). After sowing, do
not exclude light as this helps germination. Germination
will usually take 14 to 21 days. Keep the compost on the
dry side at all times, and water lightly as seedlings
Instructions: When large enough to handle,
transplant seedlings into 7.5cm (3 inch) pots or trays.
Take care not to over-water plants at any stage. Gradually
acclimatize young plants to outdoor conditions for 10 to
15 days before planting out after all risk of frost, 30cm
(12 inches) apart, or transplant into containers.
Instructions: For best results, provide a light,
well-drained soil in full sun.
for Plants in Spring Thompson
F1 ‘Magellan Coral’ Flower Award Winner
‘Magellan Coral’ blooms are
radiant. They illuminate the garden. The fully double,
dahlia flowered 5- to 6-inch blooms gleam with brilliant
coral petals. The flower quality and color are superior to
other Zinnia elegans. In addition to the color, ‘Magellan
Coral’ plants are brimming with luminous blooms.
Consistent flower production is an improved quality.
Earliness to bloom is another exceptional trait. From sowing
seed to first bloom requires only 6 to 9 weeks. Mature
zinnia plants will reach about 15 to 17 inches tall and
spread 15 to 19 inches, depending upon growing conditions.
Like all zinnias, ‘Magellan Coral’ will perform best in
a full-sun growing location. This AAS Winner is adaptable to
container culture. In the garden, ‘Magellan Coral’ is
undemanding, needing little maintenance.
Large double flowers and stems good for cutting. The
symmetrical form of each flower makes it a thing of beauty
in itself. A good blend of the best colors.
Instructions: Sow in trays, pots, etc of good seed
compost in a propagator or warm place to maintain an optimum
temperature of 75-80F (25-27C). Sowing Depth: 1/16 inch
(1.5mm). Sowing Time: March-May. Sow seeds individually in
3in (7.5cm) pots of free draining compost as they do not
transplant well. It is important to keep the soil
temperature uniformly warm and do not allow the compost to
become over wet.
Instructions: Harden off and plant out when all risk
of frost has passed 30cm (12in) apart. Prefers a rich,
light, well drained soil in full sun.
for Plants in Spring Thompson
F1 ‘Fairy Tale’ Vegetable Award Winner
‘Fairy Tale’ is a petite
plant with decorative miniature eggplants. The fruit
appearance is as luscious as the taste. ‘Fairy Tale’
eggplants are white with violet/purple stripes. The fruit
are sweet, non-bitter, with a tender skin and few seeds.
Another superior quality is the window for harvest. The
elongated oval eggplants can be picked when quite small at 1
to 2 ounces or they can be left on the plant until double
the weight, and the flavor and tenderness remain. ‘Fairy
Tale’ eggplants are recommended for marinating and
grilling whole. The harvest can begin in just 49 to 51 days
from transplanting. The petite plant reaches only 2½ feet
tall and wide, perfect for container gardening. An eggplant
has not won an AAS award since 1939, so ‘Fairy Tale’ is
truly an exceptional new variety.
Good for a wide range of culinary uses, from grilling,
stuffing to stir fries. Color violet/purple with snowy
white, pale pink with cream striping.
Instructions: Sow January to April for growing under
glass, March to April for planting outdoors, in pots of
moist seed compost and cover with a 6mm (¼ inch) layer of
compost or vermiculite. Place in a propagator or warm place,
and keep at a constant temperature of between 20-25C
(68-77F). After sowing, do not exclude light as this helps
germination. Keep the surface of the compost moist but not
waterlogged; germination will usually take 10-14 days.
Instructions: Transplant seedlings when large enough
to handle into 7.5cm (3 inch) pots, later pot on into 20cm
(8 inch) containers. Feed every 14 days with tomato
fertilizer once the first fruits have set. Provide plenty of
water, especially in dry weather. Tap flowers daily to
assist pollination. For outdoor crops, acclimatize plants to
outdoor conditions for 10-15 days before planting out 45cm
(18 inches) apart in a warm, sheltered spot. Give plants
support, and feed every 14 days with tomato fertilizer.
Instructions: Cease feeding when fruits are fully
formed, and harvest at their desired size.
Squash F1 ‘Bonbon’ Vegetable Award Winner
‘Bonbon’ is a Cucurbita
maxima with three improved traits. They are restricted
habit, earliness and superior eating qualities. ‘Bonbon’
has an upright, semi-bush habit needing less garden space.
Mature vines spread about 8 feet. When ‘Bonbon’ plants are
transplanted into a full-sun garden, look for ripe fruit
within 81 days; a full week earlier than other varieties. ‘Bonbon’
squash has thick orange flesh and when cooked delivers sweet
flavor (hence the name ‘Bonbon’) and creamy texture loaded
with vitamin A. The “boxy” shaped dark green squash is
painted with silver stripes and weighs about four pounds. Easy
to grow, ‘Bonbon’ is not highly susceptible to diseases
and is adaptable to any location where squash is grown.
The sweetest of the nutty tasting 'kabocha' type squashes.
Flattened dark green 3-5 lb fruits with delicious deep golden
flesh. Stores extremely well - for up to 6 months in a
frost-free but cool shed or garage. Plants have a less
trailing, more semi bush habit. Use for baking and roasting.
Instructions: Sow April to May in pots of moist seed
compost and cover with a 1cm (½ inch) layer of compost or
vermiculite. Place in a propagator or warm place, and keep at
a constant temperature of between 20-25C (68-77F). After
sowing, do not exclude light as this helps germination. Keep
the surface of the compost moist but not waterlogged;
germination will usually take 6-10 days.
Instructions: When at the 2 leaf stage, transplant
seedlings on into 13cm (5 inch) pots for a few weeks before
planting out, 90cm or more (36 inches) apart in a sunny
sheltered spot on rich, well drained soil. Water and feed
regularly with liquid fertilizer.
Instructions: Harvest the grapefruit-sized fruits from
late summer onwards. Cut and store remaining fruits before
frost and store in a frost-free area.
F1 ‘Sugary’ Vegetable Award Winner
‘Sugary.’ The name says it
all. Judges raved about the sweet tomato flavor. The
half-ounce dark pink fruit has a sugar content of 9.5%, higher
than most others. The fruit is produced in clusters like
grapes and can be eaten like them. ‘Sugary’ tomatoes have
a distinct shape; they are oval with a pointed blossom end. In
addition to the flavor, ‘Sugary’ plants produced a high
yield with a noticeable lack of cracked fruit. Look for ripe
fruit on the strong semi-indeterminate vines within 60 days
from transplanting into warm, prepared garden soil or large
containers. Plants are vigorous and may need pruning to
contain growth. ‘Sugary’ should set a new standard for “cherry”
size tomatoes with sweet flavor.
Cordon type (semi-indeterminate). Unique olive shaped fruits.
Early ripening, cascading trusses of superb flavored, red
fruits averaging 15-20gms (½-¾oz) holding well on the plant
without splitting. Suitable for growing outdoors or under
Instructions: Sow in late winter for heated greenhouse
cultivation or early spring for the cold greenhouse and mid
spring for outdoors. Sow 6mm (¼in) deep in a good compost.
Germination usually takes 6-14 days at 24C (75F).
Instructions: Transplant the seedlings when large
enough to handle into 7.5cm (3in) pots and grow on in cooler,
well lit conditions. Soil based composts produce shorter
plants than peat based composts. For hanging baskets, plant
carefully one per 30cm (12in) basket leaving a 3cm (1in) space
for watering. Water well and stand in a cool, airy place until
well rooted. Gradually acclimatize to outdoor conditions
before hanging outside permanently after all risk of frost.
Feed regularly and keep well watered. If planted outdoors,
space 60cm (24in) apart in moist, well drained, fertile soil
and a sunny spot.
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