All American Selections announced the first seven of the 2011 AAS Winners. Additional AAS winners will be announced soon and you will have more great garden performing plants! Visit www.all-americaselections.org. to check on further updates.
Here are the first seven 2011 AAS winners in no specific order:
1. Gallardia ‘Arizona Apricot’
Gallardia ‘Arizona Apricot’ offers a new and unique apricot color for this class. Blooms have yellow edges that deepen to a rich apricot in the center. Judges noted the award-winning distinctive flower color of the 3 to 3.5” daisy-like flowers, described as exceptionally lovely and lighter in color than traditional gaillardia. This Gaillardia x grandiflora will bloom from early summer into autumn.
The compact 12” tall plants offer bright green foliage and a tidy uniform habit best viewed when planted to the front of the flower bed. ‘Arizona Apricot” is free-flowering, blooming heavily without ventilation, covering the plant with bright blooms that look great in mass. This long-flowering perennial is hardy in USDA Zones 2-10, is relatively maintenance free, and drought-tolerant once established. Remove old flowers to encourage additional blooming.
2. Pumpkin ‘Hijinks’ F1
‘Hijinks,’ defined as lively enjoyment and unrestrained fun is an apt name for this pumpkin winner that offers loads of seasonal fun for kids. This winning pumpkin variety produces small-sized, 6 to 7 pound fruits, of a very uniform size and shape. Smooth deep orange skin with distinctive grooves give a very classy appearance to fall decorations and is ideal for painting or carving. The strong durable stem makes a great handle. Gardeners can expect high yields, notable resistance to powdery mildew, easy fruit removal from plants and excellent stem attachment. Allow plenty of space in the garden for long vines that spread up to 15 feet.
3. Salvia ‘Summer Jewel Red’
This Salvia coccinea was consistently rated “superior” or “above average” by the AAS judges because of its early and generous flower blossoms, continuing fro spring to autumn. Additionally, each dwarf and densely branching plant remains 20” tall, even at full maturity. The bright red flower spikes are covered with half inch blooms making it perfect for the bird lover’s garden where the bright red color acts as a magnet for hummingbirds. As an added bonus, gold-finches swarm the plant for seeds. Even the leaves add beauty with their finer-textured, dark green leaves.
4. Ornamental Kale ‘glamour Red’ F1
This is All-american Selections first winning Kale (edible or ornamental) in 78 years of trialing. ‘Glamour Red’ is an excellent achievement in bredding for its unique shiny leaves. The waxless quality of the leaves makes them shiny with a more intense, vivid colir as compared to existing ornamental brassicas. It is a fringed leaf type Brassica oleracea with flower head size of 10 to 12”.
This full sun annual will bloom 90 days from sowing the seed until the first color. Leaf coloring begins when the night temps fall below 55 degrees for 2 weeks. It has good disease tolerance in all regions and frost tolerant blooms from November to March in warmer climates.
5. Tomato ‘Lizzano’ F1
‘Lizanno’ is a vigorous semi-determinate tomato variety wiht a low growing, trailing habit excellent for growing in patio containers or hanging baskets. In the garden, some staking will benefit this plant despite a nice compact and uniform growing habit. The durable spreading plant grows to about 16 to 20” tall with a compact spread of only 20”. Expect abundant yields of high-quality, bright-red, baby cherry sized fruit. This variety is the first late blight tolerant cherry fruited semi-determinate on the market.
6. Viola ‘Shangri-La Marina’ F1
This winning, Viola cornuta, is an early-flowering, mounding viola in a vibrant new color for this type. In trials, the 6” tall plants kept a low-growing mounding habit. Colorful and prolific 1 ¼” blooms have light blue petals with a velvety dark blue face that is surrounded by a narrow white border.
Flower color was a consistent deep Marina blue throughout the season. This vigorous frost-tolerant biennial provides a solid mat of fall color until covered with snow followed by a great recovery in spring. Grow in full sun as a low edging in the garden or in hanging baskets and pots.
7. Tomato ‘Terenzo’ F1
‘Terenzo’ is a high yielding red cherry fruited ‘Tumbler’ type of tomato that is a prolific producer on a tidy low-growing, trailing plant. With a plant height of only 16 to 20”, this compact variety is suitable for growing in hanging baskets or containers as a patio type tomato. This very easy-to-grow determinate bush variety requires little maintenance and produces sweet-tasting fruits that are more resistant to cracking. ‘Terenzo’ is loaded with a bountiful harvest of flavorful, easy-to-pick fruits throughout the summer heat.
There you have it, some of the best selections for 2011. I know everyone can’t wait to get some of these beauties planted in their yard and garden. Happy Gardening to all!