Classic City Garden Awards - 2013

Dear All,

We take great pride in the Trials at the University of Georgia.  We don’t trial for the sake of trialing or to make us look good or to give us something to do – we trial in the steadfast belief that what we do makes a difference.  When we provide real data under real world conditions, we do so in the belief that someone, breeders, growers, retailers and consumers, will pay attention.  Quality is not limited to fertility standards and spacing, quality is also what consumers, from landscapers to buyers, see when they have a little money to spend.

So, in the steadfast belief that what we do does make a difference, here are the Classic City* Award winners for 2013, the very best plants in the trial gardens, based on year round performance and/or eye-clutching beauty.  Of the over 2000 plants in the garden, being a Classic City Award winner is equivalent to the Oscar and Tony rolled up as one.

Happy Gardening,

Dr. John Ruter

Meg Green, Trial Supervisor.


Acalypha 'Inferno'
Peace Tree Farm
Common Name:
Acalyphas have provided an incredible variety of colors and textures to our garden for several years. This year’s top eye-popping Acalypha has been ‘Inferno,’ sent to us by Lloyd Traven of Peace Tree Farms. Since receiving these plants in early April, the foliage of ‘Inferno’ has been a bright fiery red. It has continued to intensify in color throughout the heat and rain of our summer, becoming even more beautiful every day. Since receiving these plants in early April, the foliage of ‘Inferno’ has been a bright fiery red. It has continued to intensify in color throughout the heat and rain of our summer, becoming even more beautiful every day. Our plants were about 4’ tall.
Angelonia 'AngelMist Spreading Dark Purple'
Ball FloraPlant
Common Name:
Angelonia has become a favorite in our trial garden over the years, with many performing beautifully and some performing less well. ‘AngelMist Spreading Dark Purple’ was sent by Ball FloraPlant as was AngelMist Spreading White.’ Both are worthy of high merit, but the purple cultivar edged out its white sister slightly. Both cultivars were planted in hanging baskets as well as in the ground and thrived in each location. ‘AngelMist Spreading Dark Purple’ has been a profuse bloomer for the entire summer. It never had any downtime, remaining a tight mound of dark purple beauty all summer.
Caladium 'Summer Breeze'
Classic Caladiums
Common Name:
Caladiums have saved the shady areas of our garden where few plants grow,much less thrive. Practically every visitor to our garden went wild for our caladiums and most of the varieties earned our “Plants of Distinction” honors throughout the summer. ‘Summer Breeze’ outshone its siblings as they produced more and more leaves that were a beautiful clean white with rosy red veins. These plants thrived in early sun as well as in deep shade.
Calibrachoa hybrida 'Lindura Light Blue'
Common Name:
Out of the over 80 cultivars of Calibrachoas in our trial garden this summer, ‘Lindura Light Blue’ has been the best cultivar of all. It has remained covered in lovely truly light blue flowers for the entire summer. We have had this cultivar for a few years, during which time, it has always performed superbly. This award is a bit overdo for ‘Lindura Light Blue,’ but at last it is receiving its hard earned respect.
Chamaesyce 'Star Dust Super Flash'
Red Fox
Common Name: Euphorbia
The Euphorbias we have trialled in the past few years have all been completely maintenance free beautiful profuse bloomers. Euphorbia ‘Star Dust Super Flash’ is no exception. After establishing itself in a container, this euphorbia produced endless larger than usual flowers. Its habit is carefree habit as it spills its flowers over the container edges.
Gomphrena globosa 'Las Vegas Purple'
Benary Flower Seeds
Common Name:
The Las Vegas series of gomphrena has impressed us at UGA for several years. In particular, ‘Las Vegas Purple,’ has really made a bold presence in our trials this summer. Its large gumball sized flowers dot the plants similar to holiday decorative lights. As summer warmed, these purple balls multiplied and enlarged. ‘Las Vegas Purple’ resisted any potential diseases and remained upright throughout our frequent summer rains. It shone well into Fall.
Hibiscus 'Panama Red'
UGA Trial Garden
Common Name:
Hibiscus ‘Panama Red’ PP20,121 - UGA Hibiscus ‘Panama Red’ is an ornamental variety developed at The University of Georgia by Dr. John Ruter. The plants display an intense red color in high light, deeply cut foliage, stable foliage color, very large purple flowers, thrives in hot and humid conditions and flowers heavily during short days (November to April) in zone 10. ‘Panama Red’ can be grown in the garden or in a container. Plants of ‘Panama Red’ tend to stay more upright and bushy compared to other varieties. Some trimming may be necessary if this plant is grown in a crowded location.
Impatiens hawkerii 'Sun Harmony Salmon'
Danziger Flower Farm
Common Name: Sun New Guinea Impatiens
‘Sun Harmony Salmon’ from Danziger has thrived all summer in our unusually wet and not quite blistering weather of 2013. These plants were sturdy and covered in large salmon New Guinea Impatiens flowers. Look our SunPatiens! You now have a viable competitor. Congratulations to Danziger for broadening as well as brightening the field of New Guineas for the sun.
Impatiens hawkerii 'SunPatiens Compact Hot Coral'
Sakata Seed America, Inc.
Common Name: New Guinea Impatiens
Early in their development, New Guinea Impatiens bred to be grown in full sun, were an anomaly. Now, these beauties growing in the bright Georgia sunshine thrive beyond imagination as the summer’s heat attempts to bake them. Month after month, ‘SunPatiens Compact Hot Coral’ from Sakata has exploded in large brilliant deep coral blooms. These plants were indeed compact and never lodged after any rain storm.
Petunia hybrida 'Surfinia Summer Double Rose'
Suntory Collection
Common Name:
This petunia was practically perfect for the entire summer. Double rose colored clusters of blooms billowed from its container continuously for months. The foliage of 'Surfinia Summer Double Rose' remained attractive even through our rainy summer, resisting disease and thriving in the summer heat. This cultivar far out lived other petunias and remained a winner into Fall.
Solenostemon scutellaioides 'Stained Glassworks Luminesce'
Ecke Ranch
Common Name:
Coleus has become a mainstain in many sun gardens, including our trial garden. So many cultivars have been phenomenal especially the hotter the weather becomes. ‘Stained Glassworks Luminesce’ thrived, becoming more colorful as the sunshine intensified. Its compact habit enabled us to skip cutting the plants back mid season as all others were and ‘S.G. Luminesce ‘ produced very few flowers and was more maintenance free than all other coleus in our trials.

We couldn't do this without our sponsors. Thank you.