Consumer Favorites from 2019 Annual Trial Gardens

On Saturday, August 10, we invited the public from Colorado to visit and judge over one thousand different annuals from 25 different companies from around the world. We gave each visitor three flags to place in front of their favorites. Our collaborators really desire consumer input versus just professional input. The weather was not the greatest on this Saturday since it rained early morning, but we had more than 150 evaluators. Their top choices include these 10 plants which all received five votes or more.

Digitalis ‘Pink Panther’ from American Takii
Plants flower the first year and are compact with small foliage and heavily branched plants, which produce multiple spikes at one time and don’t require pinching. Sterile pink flowers are long lasting and attract pollinators. Pink flowers are abundant and very attractive.

Lantana ‘HAVANA Sunrise’ from
Dummen Orange

This plant is heat loving, and has good branching and large umbels of flowers over dark green foliage. The compact growth habit with prolific, very attractive, multi-colored flowers with shades of pink, cream and yellow makes it outstanding. Its growth habit is also very uniform and looked great in a container.

Lantana ‘Lucky Sunrise Rose’ from
Ball FloraPlant

Plants have excellent branching, which means less pinching, fewer PGRs, and tolerance to heat, drought and other stresses. Plants work well in small pots, baskets and combinations. These multi-colored numerous flowers have shades of peach and rose colors, and a uniform growth habit.

Dahlia ‘Dahlegria Orange Bicolor’ from Syngenta Flowers
Plant is tall, dark and handsome and has a more upright habit. The Dahlegria Dahlias are great in landscape and container applications, and they have great mildew tolerance. Large, colorful, single flowers stand out on the almost-black foliage. Prolific flowering made this a standout along with the dark foliage. Flowers are very attractive and mostly dark orange, but have a small splash of cream at the tip of each petal for added interest. The cream color spreads across the petal as the flowers age gracefully.

Thunbergia ‘TowerPower Red’ from Westoff
It is a vigorous grower and did well on a trellis in a container, making a tower of flowers and spilling along the ground. The flower color is a very attractive shade of dark red that fades to a shade of cream with a very dark red eye that made a great contrast.


Gaillardia ‘Heat it Up Red’ from
Proven Winners

This plant is heat tolerant and great for hanging baskets, containers or landscapes, and a continuous rebloomer. Native to North America, it is disease and deer resistant with great fall interest. No deadheading is necessary. It attracts bees and butterflies. Plants were uniform and loaded with blooms.


Dahlia ‘Electro Pink’ from Westoff
Plants are vigorous and have attractive dark foliage. Relatively large, pin cushion-type flowers are very showy with a very nice dark pink color. Possibly may lodge with overhead watering.



Salvia ‘Cathedral Blue Bicolor’ from Dummen Orange
The Cathedral™ Series Salvias offer a compact plant, producing an abundance of large, stout, flower spikes. It attracts hummingbirds and butterflies to your garden. A great choice for a container, garden bed, edging, or as a cut flower. Plants were very uniform and had a very solid canopy of blue and white blooms that was stunning in the beds. Flowers were unique with the blue blossoms set against the white sepals, which made it a very eye-catching combination.

Combination ‘MixMasters Bloom of Allegiance’ from Ball FloraPlant
Combinations, which are perfectly balanced, allow for greater genetic diversity in mixes. The prolific flowering from blue scaevola contrasted nicely with the red-orange lantana and a few white angelonia. This mix had excellent vigor and a lot of flower power. It looked great in a container.

Combination ‘Kwik KombosTM Blue LightningTM Mix Imp.’
Kwik Kombos are formulated mixes tested for consumer performance in a range of climates. Designed to provide retail color during the spring and summer months, Kwik Kombos are optimized to continually bloom in various climates. They provide maintenance-free plants for consumers, cover up to 36 inches in the landscape, and are a tough-as-nails groundcover for hard-to-establish landscapes. ‘Blue Lightning Mix’ is a very colorful combination of a golden lantana and a dark blue scaevola, with a good balance of blossoms between the two with neither dominating. The bold contrast is eye catching and the flowers are long lasting. Plants are very vigorous with dark green foliage, and looked great in a container.