Super Plants promote nursery industry

Linda Benedict, Morgan, Johnny W.  |  3/1/2011 11:10:04 PM

It’s tough to become a Super Plant. But once a plant gets that designation, it will be promoted as an ideal plant for Louisiana. Nurseries across the state will have good supplies.

The LSU AgCenter released its first group of three Louisiana Super Plants in October 2010. The second group of four was announced in February 2011.

“We’ll be promoting Super Plants each spring and fall,” said Regina Bracy, resident coordinator of the LSU AgCenter Hammond Research Station. “The plants are grown by Louisiana nursery growers and marketed through retail establishments across the state.”

Super Plants have made it through two years of testing all over the state and have survived Louisiana’s summer heat.
 
“The program will initially include annual and perennial flowers and later will include shrubs, trees, vines and ground covers, everything you can plant and grow in Louisiana,” Bracy said.

The first group of Super Plants included the Amazon series dianthus, the Camelot series foxglove and ShiShi Gashira camellia. The Super Plants promoted for spring and summer 2011 are the Serena series angelonia, Butterfly series pentas, Frostproof gardenia and Shoal Creek vitex.

The LSU AgCenter aggressively promotes Louisiana Super Plants through the news media, flyers and on its website, www.LSUAgCenter.com.

The program generates interest and awareness of these hardy plants, which allows the homeowner and professional alike to benefit from using Louisiana Super Plants for a successful landscape experience, Bracy said.

“We will continue to reach out to the industry so all retailers and wholesale growers are participating,” Bracy said.

The program is funded by the Louisiana Specialty Crops Competitiveness Program provided through the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry.

Johnny Morgan

(This article was published in the winter 2011 issue of Louisiana Agriculture Magazine.)

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