When I was in Boston last week I had the opportunity to visit Garden Vision with Jon and Tuna. Garden Vision Epimediums is the product of Darrell Probst’s breeding efforts. It’s a small nursery in Hubbardston, Massachussetts that specializes in rare and unusual Epimediums. They have an open house two weekends in the Spring and we were fortunate to be able to visit during one of them. There was a wide variety of small epimediums set out for sale, but to really appreciate them you needed to walk back to the nursery to see what the parent plants look like.
Darrell Probst has made several trips to China, Japan and Korea collecting Epimedium specimens, some of which were new to science. Through his breeding he has created some marvelous color combinations and leaf patterns that continue to extend the desirability of these hardy little ground covers. We brought back some choice specimens but some of the nicest were planted in the area mapped out for future evaluation. Here are a few of the examples that we saw.
This last one, Domino, was particularly remarkable for the profusion of flowers. From a distance the Domino plants stood out with a crown of flowers.
Epimediums are a bit like ferns in that they provide a lovely green understory to the forest environment, but they are also a lot more hardy than their delicate leaves would imply. Many of them open up with red marked leaves that only gradually go to green as the season evolves. And they seem to colonize without being invasive. Highly recommended…