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Graham Rice's New Plants Blog

Graham Rice Garden writer and plantsman Northamptonshire and Pennsylvania

Editor-in-Chief of the RHS Encyclopedia of Perennials; writer for a wide range of newspapers and magazines including The Garden and The Plantsman; member of the RHS Herbaceous Plant Committee and Floral Trials Committee; author of many books on plants and gardens.

  • Date Joined: 18 Oct 2006

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Caryopteris Sterling Silver: New multi-season shrub

Posted by Graham Rice on 11 Dec 2009 at 02:23 PM

Caryopteris Sterling Silver  (‘Lissilv’) - good foliage, good flowers. Image: ©Provar-Plants.co.ukPlants with both good foliage and good flowers are always welcome, especially in small gardens where the benefit of being rewarded by two seasons of colour from one plant is invaluable.

Caryopteris, long known for their prolific late summer and autumn flowers, have been receiving a great deal of attention from plant breeders recently - in particular, new forms with gold or silver foliage have appeared. And one of the best is Sterling Silver  (‘Lissilv').

With its intensely silver foliage it makes a superb foliage plant from spring into the fall and then in September and October the clusters of bright blue flowers appear.

Just as easy to grow as other caryopteris - sun, soil that is not too wet, prune hard in spring - Sterling Silver  (‘Lissilv') was raised by veteran shrub breeder Peter Catt. Honoured by the RHS with the Veitch Memorial Medal (VMM), Peter's first introduction was the well known Choisya Sundance almost twenty five years ago.

For many years Peter had sought to combine intensely silver foliage with a prolific show of  intense violet-blue flowers and after sowing and examining thousands of seedlings only one achieved his high standards - Sterling Silver  (‘Lissilv').

Caryopteris Sterling Silver  (‘Lissilv') is available from these RHS Plant Finder nurseries and is now becoming more widely available.

For more on Caryopteris take a look at:
RHS Caryopteris Plant Bulletin (free download)
American plant breeder Tim Wood's blog

 

Comments

Stopwatch Gardener said:

Hi Graham, can you let me know the precise flowering time of this? I'm based in Scotland in the South and need to get some late October into November flowering plants. - Sheila

on 11 Dec 2009 at 03:48 PM

Graham Rice said:

Well, it flowers September and October in southern England... May well be fading away in November and the foliage may well be past its best too where you are. When do other caryopteris flower in your area?

on 11 Dec 2009 at 04:03 PM

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