Thursday, February 6, 2014

Expo Ready + Exciting Eryngiums

Big John, Mary, Denise and I converged on the Exhibition Hall of the Alliant Energy Center (Madison, WI) this morning to accomplish early set-up for our booth (see a portion above) for the WPT Garden Expo ( which starts tomorrow afternoon.  It was nice to avoid adverse travel conditions and the crazy set-up that occurs tomorrow morning with most of the other vendors in the display area.  The set-up went well and we're ready for a great weekend of exposing the gardens to a huge group of "spring-starved" gardeners.  We'll be promoting our 25th Anniversary as well as upcoming events and programs.  We're still selling tickets from the Cottage Garden Gallery at RBG and the event starts at 3 pm tomorrow. 

It was a productive Grumpy morning although I missed most of the action.  Gene and Gary worked on preparing windows while Pat continued bending aluminum rods for future use out in the Holiday Lights Show (HLS).  Jim, Vern and Ron Y. continued carpentry projects and we also saw Maury, Dick H., Terry, Dr. Gredler, Janice, Jumbo Jim and many others.  I'm sure I missed seeing others but everyone earned their pay today.  Larry is keeping busy with equipment clean-up and repairs.  I had time to scour more seed catalogs this afternoon which I always enjoy.

I've gathered some photos of perennial Eryngium selections in this blog.  I love the native rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium) seen both above and below.  There are many species of Eryngium worldwide and they are members of the extensive Apiaceae family which is commonly called the carrot & parsley family.  With significant root systems, typically including a taproot, these perennials are all drought tolerant and do very well in our hot summers and in dry, sandy soils.  Excessive dampness isn't recommended for this low maintenance perennial. The long-lasting flowers consist of dome shaped umbels (multiple flowers forming the dome) that extend above spiny bracts. The bracts will frequently carry over flower color as seen with many of the blue varieties further below.  See below for some fun selections of this tough genus.

rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium)
rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium)
candelabra sea holly (Eryngium eburneum) - not hardy for us
Eryngium amethystinum
Eryngium planum 'Blue Glitter'
Eryngium planum 'Blue Glitter'
Eryngium planum 'Blaukappe' ('Blue Cap')
Eryngium planum 'Blue Hobbit' (short!)
nice clump of Eryngium (not sure of variety) - mid July
variegated sea holly (Eryngium planum 'Jade Frost')
giant sea holly (Eryngium giganteum 'Miss Willmott's Ghost') - biennial
same as above - Denver Botanic Garden
same as above - Vancouver, B.C.
unknown Eryngium (but pretty sweet look...)

No comments: