CO-Horts Blog

Saturday, August 3, 2013

A Great Time to Visit Color

Posted by: Jim Klett, Professor and Extension Specialist, Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture

Window boxes of annuals accent this property in Vail, Colo.
Late July through Early August is an ideal time to visit many sites throughout Colorado to observe annual flower color.  All along the Front Range and many mountain communities are bursting with fantastic color from annual flower plantings.  It is a great time to visit city displays of annuals along with more formal plantings at botanic gardens and the trial grounds at Colorado State University.
Petunia Cascadias Indian Summer
The CSU Trial Grounds is located on College Avenue and Lake Street next to the University Center for the Arts (1401 Remington Street, Fort Collins).  These Trials include about 1070 different annual varieties with over 500 different containers including over 250 new varieties for 2013.  Many new petunia colors are planted which include some major genetic breakthroughs along with exceptional Sun Impatiens.  Petunia ‘Cascadias™ Indian Summer’ has an outstanding mix of flower color along with a new distinct yellow petunia called ‘Suprise Yellow’.
Petunia Surprise Yellow
Numerous lantana varieties are planted but one called ‘Lucky Sunrise Rose’ has an extremely attractive flower color that your eye goes to immediately. 
Lantana Lucky Sunrise Rose
The annual flowers in Old Town Fort Collins are exceptional with many great combinations in containers and beds. 
CSU Annual Flower Trial Gardens
1401 Remington Street, Fort Collins

In the Denver metro area the Denver Botanic Garden has a great display of newer varieties along their York Street entrance.  Inside the gardens annuals are planted throughout the garden and especially in their All American Display area.  They have also displayed most of the ‘Best Of’ winners from the 2012 CSU Trials.

Parks and parkways throughout the City of Denver have excellent annual displays.  The formal Mount Vernon Garden in Washington Park along with their large display of annual color as you enter the park are places to visit for mass use of color.  Sixth, Seventh and Seventeenth Avenue parkways have excellent color displays along with displaying proper use of height in their displays.

Mountain communities, especially Vail, has outstanding annual flower displays.  Many of the displays have incorporated numerous perennial and ornamental grasses to add distinct color and texture contrasts.  Containers, hanging baskets and flower boxes are throughout the business area making a very enjoyable shopping visit.  The flower boxes around many of the restaurants show outstanding uses of color.
Window boxes of annuals dress up this entrance
Try to take some time at this time of year to visit some of the outstanding use of annual colors throughout our beautiful state.