The best new plant releases: 2015

It turns out, my most frequently read blog post for 2015 was ‘The best new plant releases: 2014’. So, despite having many gardens stacking up, willing me to write about them, I thought I’d better bring you the 2015 plant releases, before we finish the year.

I’ll take you through the biggies that have come on to the market and my very favourites that fill much needed gaps. But before I do that, it’s probably a good time to ask for a favour. I’d really appreciate your feedback as to what you’d like to see more of. Was the 2014 plant release post your favourite, too? What would you like to see more or less of? Do you prefer sticking to garden reviews or would you like more specific, topical discussions? Do the less garden-related posts bore you senseless or is it fun to see a bit of my travels?  It would be great to know what you think. Thank you in advance for your thoughts.

So, without further ado, here is my pick of 2015.

1. Adenanthos ‘Silver Lining’

Adenanthos 'Silver Lining'I can’t get enough of Adenanthos. The colour, texture, form, little red flowers and the inability to walk past it without stretching out my hand to feel it’s unrivalled softness, make me want to plant it in every garden. Its common name is Woolly Bush, but I’ve never felt wool this soft. And whilst I’ve got the dwarf form at home, ‘Silver Lining’ is now even shorter, at just 40cm tall. Growing to 1.5m wide it makes a fabulous ground cover, extremely well suited to raised planters, where it will spread to soft the edges, positively thrive in the dry soil and of course, be at perfect stroke-able height! It’s only been available in South Australia up to now, but watch out for it more broadly during 2016.

2. Ligustrum ‘Sunny’

Ligustrum 'Sunny'Who could resist a plant named ‘Sunny’? Even one that’s a privet? This privet is sterile, so won’t cause any of the problems we are so familiar with in Australia. And just look at that colour. It will add great contrast to the garden, without any of the brashness that so often comes with yellow, variegated cultivars. And whilst it will reach 2m tall, it can be pruned to any shape or size, even as topiary, with its dense, neat form and small leaf size.

3. Summerina ‘Sunflare’, ‘Sunshine’ and ‘Twilight’

Summerina 'Sunshine'The Summerina collection is a new range of plants that have been bred by crossing the bright flowers of Rudbeckia with the hardiness of Echinacea. You might find them labelled as Rudbeckia, Summerina or even Echibeckia, but you’ll not mistake them if you see them. Growing to just 60cm, their sturdy stems will flower from spring until autumn and hold their form well in a pot. The photo above is of ‘Sunshine’ (are you noticing a pattern?!) but there are other shades ranging from sunset reds to oranges and they look simply marvellous planted en masse.

4. Acacia ‘Fettuccini’ standard

Acacia fettuccini standardI’ve been using Acacia ‘Fettuccini’ in my designs for many years; it’s probably my favourite Acacia of all, with its slightly mad, curly leaves; dense, compact form; and the brightest, most sparkly shade of green. Now, we have Acacia ‘Fettuccini’ in standard form, with a tall stem. Not the easiest to position – quite an informal plant, propagated with a formal look – but it does help us to bridge the current gap between native and formal gardens. Some imagination and this could be a used to wonderful effect as a feature plant.

5. Syzygium ‘Little Pilly’

Sygygium 'Little Pilly'Another plant for filling a gap in the market, this lilly pilly grows to about 1.5m tall and is perfect as a hedging plant. Lilly pillies are my preferred choice of Sydney hedge in most situations, due to their hardiness, seasonal colour and the flavour of Australia they bring, but they are generally very big or very small. Well, no longer; this is an excellent height for front boundaries or unimposing screens and it shows strong resistance to the dreaded psyllid bug. It even grows well in a pot, lending itself to more formal shapes and coping well with hot sun or partial shade. I can see this being a very popular plant.

Salvia ‘Love and Wishes’

Salvia 'Love and wishes'Finally, whilst being launched in 2014 in Australia, Salvia ‘Love and Wishes’ has really made it big across the world this year, winning awards in numerous countries including at the RHS Chelsea flower show. Bred by John Fisher in Orange, NSW, and with proceeds of each sale going to the Make-A-Wish Australia charity, this really is something for us to be proud of.  It’s popularity is due to its very long flowering period, its wonderful dark plum and claret colourings and its neat, naturally domed shape. Possibly the very best Salvia of all. I love it.

Which leaves me to just wish you and your families a very merry Christmas and a healthy, joyous 2016, filled with plants and gardens in abundance! Thanks so much for your interest in my gardening mutterings, and I look forward to seeing you again early in the new year. Until then….

With thanks to Plants Management Australia for the photographs in this post.

14 thoughts on “The best new plant releases: 2015

  1. Nicola Hensel says:

    I laughed when I saw the first two on the list Janna, because I keep pausing in front of them whenever I go to a nursery. I always have to touch the Adenanthos and there’s something mesmerising about the tiny shiny leaves of the ligustrum. I’ve been bringing some dark purple and inky leaves into my little garden and I’m just starting to understand how good that bright citrussy green looks mixed in with the moody stuff. I didn’t realise it was a privet, so I guess that means it’s fairly indestructable!
    As for blog post topics, no help here, I’ve been looking back through the archives, and I’m happy with all your topics.

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thanks, Nicola. We obviously have similar taste in plants! A great garden combining darker, moody colours with bright ‘zings’ is Steven Wells’ garden in Melbourne. I mentioned it a couple of posts ago but I’ll try and write it up more fully soon. It’s lovely to have the contrast, as you say. Oh, and glad it’s not just me who can’t resist Adenanthos!

  2. germac4 says:

    Janna, I have enjoyed all the posts I’ve read so far, but I do love a tour around an interesting garden the way you do it. So that would be my favourite topic. I also liked reading about new plants releases, but I suspect Canberra’s tricky climate may not suit some of them.(and the garden is nearly full) Best wishes for the Christmas season.

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thanks so much, Gerrie. The lilly pilly would certainly struggle with frosts but I’d be tempted to try the others, if only in a sheltered spot. Mind you, as you say, it’s often good to have reasons not buy every plant available; there are only so many most of us can fit into our modest spaces! Thanks so much for good wishes; all the best to you too!

  3. rusty duck says:

    I’ve loved reading about your travels and the gorgeous gardens you’ve chosen to visit. It will be so interesting to see which you pick out in the UK!
    Have a great Christmas Janna. 2016 will be an exciting one for you, for sure.

  4. Adriana Fraser says:

    I love all the new plants Janna – especially the Salvia (another one to lust after)! My favourite posts are your garden reviews because they are educational, insightful and inspiring. You do far more than just ‘review’ a garden – your insights into design are always astonishing and revealing. Having said that I do remember an early blog you did on garden design that was eye-opening to me, but looking through your posts I can’t find it back. Looking forward to your NZ reviews and visiting lots of gardens with you (in spirit) when you are back in the UK. Thank you for a most inspiring year of reading Janna.

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thanks ever so much, Adriana. I do love visiting gardens with you, too! One of these days, I hope we’ll manage it in person. I’m so glad the garden ‘reviews’ are still interesting; it’s great to have feedback. New Zealand was incredible, but I borrowed a camera from a friend who is still over there, so we’ll have to wait until the New Year to get those. Look forward to sharing them soon.

  5. Suzanne Marsh says:

    Janna, I think you do a good mix of topics and I always enjoy reading what you write. However, some garden tips on design that you did early this year had a big impact. They sent me into a frenzy of transplanting and reassessment of most of my garden beds…in February heat! Although not complete, some of those beds have come together very well and I am pleased with the results. So all aspects of garden design get a big tick from me.
    Merry Christmas to you and Paul and thank you for enriching my gardening know-how.

    • jannaschreier says:

      Thank you, Suzanne. It sounds like I should continue to put in a mix of topics, which is great. I still have your garden to write up; so much I want to say but my photos didn’t come out so well and I hate to not do gardens justice. I have a few gardens like this that I’m wrestling with; often it’s a case of dull light that makes a garden look flat. Perhaps I’ll have to convince you to send me some more. I have all the words, just not the pictures and I’d love to share my learnings from your beautiful place.
      Happy Christmas to you all in Perth, and best wishes for 2016. Hope I might see you once more in Sydney before we’re off.

  6. Louise Dutton says:

    Janna I find that fascinating, I wonder why that was the most read blog? Personally I find all your blogs interesting and eagerly await each of them. Your photos give me ideas and allow me to imagine what they might be like to visit. The many perspectives and ideas you write about enable me to reflect on what I would like in my garden. I often find myself gasping when I see some of the photos included. Thank you for a wonderful site full of great ideas and places to visit. Wishing you and Paul a very happy Christmas! All the best with the move and the transition into a new climate and country. Look forward to see what you share with us from afar!

    • jannaschreier says:

      Hi Louise. To some extent I think it is people googling the new plant names and as they are new, there isn’t much on the internet about them, hence many come to my site. My guess is it’s more that than it being a particularly thrilling post! Thank you so much for your kind words and for coming along with me on my blogging journey; it’s a true delight to share thoughts with like-minded people so thank you. I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas with your lovely family.

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