Search Results for: by Tony Avent

Henry’s Stone Oak: Lithocarpus henryi

by Tony Avent  illustration by Ippy Patterson Since Raleigh is known as the City of Oaks, most residents like to think they can identify oak trees, but when I show Henry’s oak to garden visitors, their jaws drop to an unnatural…

Short plants got no reason to….Verbesina olsenii

by Tony Avent In a world where most plant breeders and nursery folks buy into the mistaken proposition that all homeowners want short plants, I embrace a different notion. I can’t imagine anything worse than opening my front door and…

Eureka! A glimpse of blue Tricyrtis lasiocarpa

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson It was early in the morning, a sunny Monday morning, when Mark Weathington of Raleigh’s J.C. Raulston Arboretum and I sped down the winding roads of Alishan mountain on the island of Taiwan,…

Sunny delight: Sinningia sellovii

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson At one time or another, most gardeners have grown African violets, or saintpaulia hybrids. Back in the disco era, we of a certain age also indulged in trying to grow their more challenging…

Technicolor wonder: Canna ‘Phasion’

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson I’ll never forget the day in June 1997 when I met Canna ‘Phasion’ in person. For normal people, it would be like meeting Elvis or Barbra Streisand. I had long been a fan…

Hummingbird heaven: Spigelia Marilandica (Indian Pink)

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson Spigelia marilandica is another of those great plants native to the Southeast that few people have grown or even heard about. In the wild, I usually see Spigelia growing on deeply wooded slopes,…

All hail the regal OSTRICH FERN

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson In my travels through much of the northeastern United States, I have always been struck by the amazing masses of ostrich fern happily congregated in low wetlands. I was determined to grow this…

Hellebores: A rose is a rose, except when it’s a lenten rose

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson Most folks don’t typically think of winter as a great garden season, especially if they migrated here from the northern gardening hinterlands. In Raleigh, however, winter is usually filled with windows of good…

Just one plant: Sabal minor

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson Certain plants, like the late comedian Rodney Dangerfield, never get the respect they deserve. A classic example is our native scrub palm, Sabal minor, also known as the dwarf or bush palmetto. Perhaps its ubiquitous…

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