Friday, November 22, 2013

Coleus 'Vanessa' has a story.

Coleus 'Vanessa' grown on Vicky's deck.

Story # 119,

Vanessa always wanted to have a plant named for her.  Since she is not a hybridizer of plants, she can’t create one on her own.

I can help her with that.

Plant species, which are all ‘weeds’ somewhere in the World, follow a strict set of rules for naming.  The Genus, Species naming system is important to take the chaos out of plant identification.

Hybrid names or selections of certain clones are a little more free form.  Names are picked by the hybridizer or originator.   Selections that can be commercially grown are given names that fit the marketing program --- ‘Knockout’ Roses.  Commercial names used in Europe are often changed for the U.S. market --- ‘Ladyslipper’ Streptocarpus.

I looked for a plant that could be ‘Vanessa’ and decided on Coleus ‘Combat’.  It is a European variety listed by an Israeli propagator.  It has a wild and crazy foliage pattern which would match Vanessa’s personality.  It’s bright and vibrant --- Definitely worth promoting.

If you didn’t get one this year then watch for Coleus ‘Vanessa’ next Spring at Longwood Gardens’ Plant Shop.

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