Feb 7, 2017
2017 Spring Trials Preview — Vol. 2By Jasmina Dolce

And the countdown continues! In my last newsletter, I began a series of “sneak peeks” into the new introductions that will be on display at the 2017 California Spring Trials. Today, the annual trek down the California coast is just 51 days away; are you prepared?

If you haven’t yet finalized your travel plans, GPN has published its annual California Spring Trials Companion to help you schedule appointments and prepare an itinerary. We’ve compiled all the location information including maps and contacts. You can access the Companion here.

In the meantime, I’d like to continue sharing with you some of the new varieties that will make their official debut at the trials. And be on the lookout for my next newsletter where I’ll share even more.

Bidens ‘Pretty in Pink’

A new color in Danziger’s bidens assortment, ‘Pretty in Pink’ is an upright, compact variety decorated with an abundance of pink flowers with purple stripes. It is fast growing and early blooming, and excels as a single plant in a port or can be used as a tall element in mixed plantings.

Petunia ‘SUCCESS! Pink Star’
Ernst Benary of America

This year, Benary is introducing the first pink star in trailing petunias from seed. This eye-catching color shows off its stable color pattern on well-mounded plants. Its earliness, plant habit and uniformity fit perfectly into the SUCCESS! series.

Salvia ‘Color Spires Azure Snow’
Walters Gardens

Azure Snow is an incredible improvement on the bicolor category of salvia. By comparison, this variety is compact and refined, producing violet-blue and white flowers on dark green foliage.

Calibrachoa Conga series
Ball FloraPlant

The Conga series has nine new and improved colors (Sunset Kiss is pictured) for easy-to-produce quarts and color bowls. Conga’s naturally compact habit is perfect for pot-tight production, and no PGRs are necessary. Excellent pH tolerance and profuse flowering give Conga superior hold at retail.

Dahlia LaBella Maggiore series

Added to the LaBella dahlia range is the new Labella Maggiore. This new sub-series is comprised of seven straight and funky colors (Pink White is pictured). The flower size varies between 4.5 and 6.5 inches. Plants are perfect for the patio or garden.

Dianthus ‘Supra Pink’
Hem Genetics

‘Supra Pink’ is a new color addition to the Supra series. It is an interspecific hybrid between Dianthus chinensis and a perennial species, which exhibits excellent heat and cold tolerances. It is winter hardy to Zones 4B-5. ‘Supra Pink’ recently received an All-America Selections award for its unique deeply laced flowers and exceptional garden performance.

Lobularia ‘Awesome Bicolor Purple White Improved’
Cohen Propagation Nurseries

Bred by Breier, Bicolor Purple White is the newest member to the Awesome series. Prolific flowering and a very evenly mounding shape make this new bicolor a great addition to lobuaria offerings.

Antirrhinum Crackle n’ Pop series

Crackle n’ Pop is an early and uniform pack series bred for ultimate branching in the early stages of growth. This structure yields a strong plant, with the ability to sustain itself in transit, on the shelf and at home. It is available in five bold colors and two bright bicolors.

Aster Showmakers series
Royal Van Zanten

The new Showmakers series showcases double-flowered asters. Plants are covered with flowers in a wide range of striking blue-violet, beautiful soft pink and white colors. They are suitable for indoor production but also offer perfect timing for outdoor production.

Begonia ‘Canary Wings’
Ball Ingenuity

‘Canary Wings’ offers a unique look on a plant that has become a staple in gardens around the world. It shows yellow to bright chartreuse foliage throughout the season. The plant continues to perform all summer long an dis a great option for part-shade/shade baskets.

Which new varieties are you most excited to see at this year’s trials or even add to your production next season? What characteristics stand out most to you? Are there certain types of varieties that your customers are requesting? Shoot me an email, and let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

— Jasmina

Jasmina Dolce

Jasmina Dolce is managing editor of GPN magazine. She can be reached at [email protected]

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