Panicum ‘Cape Breeze’ falls apart

Is it the rich midwest soil, the abundant rain, or is this just what happens when ‘Cape Breeze’ switchgrass matures? These 4 plants were planted in 2015 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Last year they were much more upright. IMG_6985

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Ernst Pagel, Germany


Ernst Pagel, famous German plantsman, grower and breeder shown in at his nursery and with attendees from the 1998 International Stauden Union, Germany. Pagel introduced many grasses and other perennials we use today throughout the world.

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Historic 1998 Stauden Union, Germany

All attendees from the U.S. at this international perennial growers meeting. Who are these people? Mary Meyer purple shirt second row, to her left daughter Laura, standing next to the man with the camera Wolfgang Oehme, famous landscape designer. Bill Miller is in the back row….name these people!! Jayne Roberts, Debbie Lonnee and Mary Walters are here; Martha Simon kneeling in front, nurseryman Richard Simon’s daughter. Steve Still far right, and Kurt Bluemel with suspenders at left. IMG_7099

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“Grasses exemplify elegance”

This IMG_8017is the first sentence of a recent article by a well-know horticulturist….and yet I wondered…is this true? How many people would use the work ‘elegant’ to describe grasses..and this was an article on native grasses. Perhaps grasses have moved to a new level of sophistication! Shown at left is an elegant looking Indiangrass.

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Carex ‘Ice Dance’

‘Ice Dance’ is one of the best looking variegated sedges. It’s not super hardy in Minnesota and can look rough in the spring. Fortunately lots of new growth shows at the edges of the plant, and with some clean up the dead foliage can be easily removed. IMG_6750

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Slow start for little bluestem

What’s going on with some of the little bluestem? Why so slow to start this year? The above photos show well established healthy plants in 2016. On the right rodent damage in the middle of the plant…some of the crown is missing, eaten during the winter! Also, we cut these plants back this spring, did not burn them, did that mean a slower start for the crown to warm up ? May 31, 2017, will report how they look in 2 weeks.

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‘Straw Hat’ sedge

Carex pensylvania ‘Straw Hat’ has numerous, showy yellow flowers. An early bloomer, flowers appear in mid to late April in Minnesota. The plants shown above were plugs planted in 2016. ‘Straw Hat’ appears to be an improvement on the native species with many more flowers. Intrinsic Perennials introduction also available from Emerald Coast.

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