Spring has sprung and now is the ideal time to shop for some unique plants for your garden at the Spring Spectacular Plant Sale.
The University of Tennessee Gardens in Knoxville is holding its spring plant sale on Saturday, April 9, 2016 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. A preview sale will be held on Friday, April 8, from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. for all UT employees, Gardens volunteers, and Friends of the UT Gardens. Friends will also receive a 10 % discount on all purchases. If you are not a Friend yet, you will also be able to sign up for a membership at the preview sale and receive the member discount on purchases.
We will be offering brief informational sessions throughout the day on many of the choice selections of perennials, trees, shrubs, roses, delicious spring greens, cloned and new Lenten rose (hellebore) introductions, blueberry planting basics and flower garden design. Special guest and author, John Tullock will be speaking and signing his newest book: Seed to Supper: Growing and Cooking Great Food No Matter Where You Live–100+ Delicious Recipes & Growing Tips for Windowsills to Wide Open Spaces.
Featured spring-blooming perennials at the plant sale are bleeding hearts and baptisia (false indigo).
Bleeding hearts are deer resistant and just a fantastic, durable shade-loving perennial that you’ll have in your garden for years! Every garden needs at least one! We only have 50 of each of the following 4 selections so shop early: ‘Alba’ – solid white flowers that glow in the shade garden $20; ‘Pink’ – pink flowers with some white $20; ‘Gold Heart’ – vibrant gold foliage with pink flowers that is striking in the shade garden $24; and ‘King of Hearts’ – a hybrid with fern-like foliage that lasts all summer and deep rosy pink flowers $16. Baptisia is revered as one of the great sun-loving backbone perennial plants available to American gardeners. It is a tall (3-4ft), rugged character whose intense blue flowers appear in April-May above handsome, gray-green leaves that remain an attractive feature of the garden all summer. We have only 50 of each of the following selections: ‘Caspian Blue’ – Deep blue flower spikes on strong, sturdy stems $16; ‘Carolina Moonlight’ – Creamy yellow flower spikes $20; and B. tinctoria – Bright gold flower spikes $9.
Additionally, we will have a huge variety of plants to meet your gardening needs. Some edibles include Blueberry varieties: ‘Brightwell’, ‘Pink Lemonade’, ‘Tifblue’, and ‘Premier’. Thornless blackberries: ‘Natchez’ and ‘Triple Crown’. Figs: ‘Black Mission’, ‘Brown Turkey’, ‘Ischia’, and ‘Panache’. A vast array of herbs including Italian parsley, assorted mints, hardy selections of rosemary and lavender, and various thymes and sages. Ornamental perennials, trees and shrubs that will be available include a wide selection of choice conifer selections not easily found, the new ‘Alley Cat’ variegated redbud tree, the new seedless and double flower ‘Smoothie’ series of Rose-of-Sharon shrub, ‘Moonlight’ Chinese hydrangea vine, and new selections of Chinese fringe flower shrub.
For directions to the Gardens’ location in Knoxville on the campus of the UT Institute of Agriculture on Neyland Drive, or for a listing of the huge selection of plants on sale, go to the UT Gardens website: http://utgardens.tennessee.edu/
W. Alan Bruhin, Extension Director