It's always a great time to visit the Ridge Road Garden Center! We have a great selection of seasonal perennials and annuals that will beautify your gardens, no matter the size! There is so much to see... perennials, annuals, bulbs, ornamental grasses, trees, flowering shrubs, ground covers, and shade plants for outdoors and indoors. Come and see our selection of gifts, garden tools, pots, soil, plant food, cactus, amendments and garden accessories at the Garden Center!
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The Southern belles of the plant world, camellias come in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. Camellias are evergreen shrubs with dark, glossy leaves. Flowers may be white, pink, red, or streaked, and blooms can be single or double. Similarities between peonies and camellias include lushly petaled blooms, and a tendency to live for more than a century. These broadleaf evergreen shrubs bear some of the most beautiful blooms during the colder months of the year. They offer bright, long-blooming flowers, and serve as popular foundation and specimen plants. Camellias require acidic soil that drains well. Camellias are best planted in rich, moist soil in a part-shade location. Caring for camellias will include water and fertilizer. You’ll find two primary species of camellias in American gardens: japonica and sasanqua camellias. The latter are hardier and tougher than the japonicas, tolerating drought and resisting disease better. Camellias are reliably hardy in USDA zones 7 to 9, although the fall-blooming ‘Winter’ series and spring-blooming ‘April’ series of camellias are hardy in zone 6B.
Planted for their really spectacular blooms that come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes, mums are the perfect fall-blooming plant. Their showy flowers appear in late summer and continue into the fall, creating dense mats of color. If you're planning on overwintering them, plant mums in late spring to give them time to develop roots. Mums are the quintessential flower of fall! They're sturdy, don't mind a light frost, and come in a rainbow of colors. Technically, they're perennials. They can be a few inches tall or a few feet, depending on the type. It is a plant that requires full sun and well-drained soil to grow, and it will do best in zones five to 10. Because of the plants’ shallow roots, it will need a bit more water than most plants. These fare so well in pots on porch steps or along the walkway until frost nips them. So cheery and colorful, they will brighten your home landscape well into winter.
Coral bells (Heuchera) grown primarily for its colorful foliage, is a cold-tolerant perennial that comes in every shade from deepest burgundy to lime green and everything in between. The stunning, frilly leaves provide pops of color long after your other annuals have faded. Heuchera plants form round mounds with a woody rootstock or crown at their base. Small bell-shaped flowers appear in spring or early summer on tall stems. Rich in nectar, the flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies, plus they make nice cut flowers. Their leaves are rounded, lobed, hairy, and evergreen or semi-evergreen, depending on the climate. Besides traditional green-leaved coral bells, new varieties of heuchera have leaves in shades of purple, rose, lime green, gold, and variegations in between. Heuchera are native North American plants that are at home in woodlands, rock gardens, containers, and borders. They can also be used as ground covers.
The most popular of the irises, with strap-like foliage and large showy blooms in a wide range of colors, Bearded Iris are among the easiest to grow provided that you plant them in a sunny site with well-drained soil. Irises are notorious for their hardy disposition; they don't mind temperature extremes, as long as the soil allows excess rain or snowmelt to drain away. Plant irises in late summer, when they are finished actively growing. One major departure of growing irises compared to other perennials: They do not like mulch. Although all irises share sword-like leaves and flowers with six spreading or drooping lobes, there are groups that grow from creeping rhizomes while others grow from bulb structures. Divide irises every three to five years. Irises are toxic to cats and dogs, especially the rhizomes. Trimming back foliage fans to about 6 inches in the fall makes the garden look tidy, reduces leaf surface area that might host fungal disease, and removes caterpillar eggs. Destroy all foliage that you remove, and do not add it to the compost bin. Although it's not a common method, you can grow irises in pots that are at least 12 inches wide.
The gardener knows pansies as flowers with almost heart-shaped, overlapping petals in bright colors or bi-colors, often with face-like center markings. Breeding has produced pansies that are better able to stand up to the cold, surprisingly hearty. They’ll survive a frost, bouncing back from even single digit temperatures. If the blooms wither in the cold, the plants will often stay alive to bloom again, which makes them a great flowering plant for fall and early winter color. Good for containers, borders, and as ground cover, they are a go-to flower for reliable color almost year-round. Pansies look pretty on their own in a monochrome scheme or in mixed colors; they also look pretty when planted with other cool-season flowers such as violas, primroses, trailing lobelia, and sweet alyssum. USDA Zones 7 and above can grow pansies throughout the winter, and there are newer varieties, such as the ice pansy, that are bred to withstand light snow.
Vinca is a ground cover that produces glossy, dark green leaves and blue or white flowers in early spring. Grow vinca anywhere you need a fast-growing ground cover. The plant tolerates dry, poor soils and shade. The foliage is dark green and leathery. Annual vinca plants bear single blooms with five petals that frequently touch or overlap from early summer until the first frost. No matter your preference, all are attractive to butterflies and are rabbit resistant. Plant your vincas around the same time you set out your tomato transplants: when evening temperatures average 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Full sun is best, although some afternoon shade is fine. Annual vinca is best grown in a sandy loam soil in a full sun location. Although tolerant of drought, it will perform best with weekly water soaked in rather than sprayed from overhead. Vincas are free-flowering and self-cleaning, and no deadheading is necessary.