Your best Phlox?

rouge21_gw(5)February 7, 2013

Of course such a topic has surely been posted in previous years but for sure not in 2013 ;). It came to mind seeing the recent thread discussing "Blue Paradise" Phlox plus it could be fun for me to read while I wait for the forecasted 6 to 10 inches of snow to come in the next 24 hours!

Try to make reference to such criteria as

- floriferousness
- colour and beauty of flower
- height
- health ie mildew
- any unique features

I will start.

I love my Peppermint Twist. It blooms for an incredibly long time...maybe 4 to 5 weeks for that wonderful first bloom and it will re-bloom just fine with a good shear.

In the two very different locations I have this phlox it has performed similarly with little mildew.

One caveat is that both stands had grown far in excess of the advertised height of 18"...mine were over 3 feet. This year I plan to pinch them back well in advance of blooming to reduce this height as their current placement assumed a much shorter plant.

As well I did experience some reversion/mutation to solid pink/coral...but not much.

This post was edited by rouge21 on Thu, Feb 7, 13 at 19:55

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Ispahan Zone6a Chicago

I have many new phlox that were planted last year from Perennial Pleasures Nursery in Vermont, including 'Blue Paradise'. I look forward to seeing how they grow this summer.

I planted 'Peppermint Twist' and 'David' in autumn 2011. 'Peppermint Twist' remained small as advertised and flowered steadily all season long. I loved the bicolored blooms. No mildew and it had a light fragrance, though it was hard to bend down that low to sniff it, LOL! It will be interesting to see how much larger it grows in the future.

My plant of 'David' grew into a nicely robust clump about 2.5 feet tall its first summer with GIANT bloom heads of pure, brilliant white. During its first wave of blooms, it stayed in full flower for weeks even with sweltering heat and erratic water availability from a hose. Once finished, I never got around to deadheading the old bloom panicles and was surprised to see a wave of secondary buds pop out underneath the old spent buds in the same bracts. The second wave was just as good as the first. After wave two finished, I deadheaded which stimulated a lot of smaller bloom panicles from almost the entire length of the remaining stems. There were at least a few blooms present until early November. No mildew and a wonderful fragrance. I can't wait to see what it does next year!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 8:17PM
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boday

Re David

Well for one, David will almost double in height and upon pinching will broaden. I tend to shear the front part of Phlox which inhibits blooms by a couple of weeks, thereby extending the first bloom over the individual plants.

An interesting Phlox is Lord Clayton which has darker foliage than Starfire and remains through the season. Flowers are identical.

I grow David, Eva Cullum, Starfire and a few short Flames. David would still be the favorite. I don't really have any problems with any of them. I tried some of the variegated varieties and to me they were too busy, preferred the foliage before the blooms. A lot of clash.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 12:04AM
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ninamarie(4Ont.)

My favourites include Blue Paradise, David and Red Riding Hood. Red Riding Hood is a terrific bright red, mildew free in my gardens. It has attractive foliage and a good long bloom period. I am also very fond of one that I have (for lack of a proper name) called Old Fashioned Pink.
I've never grown a more mildew prone phlox - in a bad summer, all leaves will turn entirely white. However, it blooms right into and often through November, out blooming every other phlox that I have ever grown. Its a luscious clear pink in colour and very popular with visitors to the garden.
I also have a fondness for Nora Leigh, the first of the variegated cultivars I ever grew. The foliage remains clean and crisp all summer. I've never seen this phlox with mildew, and it is worth growing for its foliage alone.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 9:54AM
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rouge21_gw(5)

ninamarie wrote:

I also have a fondness for Nora Leigh, the first of the variegated cultivars I ever grew.

Thanks 'marie' for reminding me of the variegated phlox in my garden. I actually like "Shockwave" better than "NL"...In my opinion the flower colour seems better suited to the leaf colour. But definitely both have impressive variegation.

(the pictures below were taken this past season and as you have mentioned with your "Nl" you can see that my "Shockwave" shows very little mildew.)

This post was edited by rouge21 on Sun, Feb 10, 13 at 5:27

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 8:25PM
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ninamarie(4Ont.)

Yes, I agree that its flower colour is a better match for Shockwave's foliage, which is brighter and prettier than that of Nora Leigh..
Nora Leigh's flowers always look like they belong to another plant. But Nora Leigh has been a stalwart performer in my gardens - impervious to drought, flood, too much or not enough sun. It has never had a bad moment. Shockwave is too new for me yet to make that evaluation. I've had it for a few years now, but I can't even remember where its planted, whereas I could lead you to Nora Leigh even under all the snow.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 10:21AM
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rouge21_gw(5)

Last year was the first full season (so one over-winter) for the "Shockwave" you see above. If their very good performance is repeated again in 2013 then I will have a winner in my garden. But for sure 'marie' it sounds like your NL is aa proven winner in your garden ;).

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 11:35AM
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the_plant_geek(z5)

Shockwave has so far been a fantastic performer and very mildew resistant.

The flames and pixies have performed very well for me, no mildew. Great short plants.

David is a classic and a PPA winner. Nothing else needs to be said.

Minnie Pearl is one of the most mildew resistant phlox in existence. Yet most retailers don't seem to carry it despite being readily available.

I'm intrigued by 'Tiara' as it's the first double flowered phlox. Mine unfortunately didn't make it. I need to get another one.

I'm sure you all mainly want to hear about paniculata types, but 2 others I wouldn't be without:

Phlox stolonifera 'Home Fires' is a fantastic bright pink groundcover phlox for part shade.

Phlox bifida is similar to the typical creeping phlox (P. subulata) types but more clump-forming and substantial looking. GREAT plant.

I also really dig P. pilosa and P. glaberrima 'Triple Play'. 'Triple Play' has yet to bloom for me, but the variegated foliage and short habit are great. P. pilosa is the native sand phlox and a butterfly magnet (and a host for some lepidoptera... though which ones I can't remember).

The Plant Geek
www.confessionsofaplantgeek.com
www.botanophilia.com
www.facebook.com/botanophilia

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 1:06PM
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katob Z6ish, NE Pa

ispahan- you don't happen to have any pictures of your new phlox, do you? I'd love to see the new ones from PP nursery in Vermont. They seem to have a great selection but I think I'm too cheap to place an order myself.

I transplanted most of my phlox together into a new bed last fall. I'm hoping they put on a great show now that they are all together and in better soil. I only have a few named ones, the rest are either seedlings or no ID ones so I can't really offer any 'best phlox' comments, but Darwin's choice is starting to grow on me, mostly for the leaves, but also the flowers.

The reds just aren't happy with me and I can't seem to get a good show out of any of them..... and I also haven't found a dwarf one that I like. I understand the theory of them being better suited to smaller gardens, but really? They take up just as much square footage yet don't seem to bloom as vigorously. Plus they just look dumpy to me.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 8:37PM
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