Last week I had the pleasure of visiting a private garden on three acres, south…
Nineteenth century petunia continues its popularity –
The petunia, first brought from Argentina to England in 1831, provides a powerful example of the importance of hybridizing in the garden industry.
We continue to grow petunias, and, in fact, they are among the top sellers for such prominent growers as Proven Winners.
It is the same petunia from the nineteenth century, but hybridizers have had a field day with this flower.
In 1894 Boston seed company owner W. W. Rawson wrote about the petunia in his catalog.
Rawson wrote, “The brilliancy and variety of their colors, combined with the duration of their blooming period, render them invaluable.”
Today the petunia comes in many colors, and the flowers are either single and funnel shaped, ruffled, or doubled.
Since the Wave petunia first appeared on the market in 1995, the petunia world has not been the same since.
According to Wave’s blog, a Japanese brewery bred the first Wave petunia.
“Beer and wine companies often employ horticulturists who grow plants for the many flavors and components that go into making their products. Back in the 1990s, this particular company was exploring opportunities for wine-grape breeding when it uncovered a vigorous spreading petunia growing wild like a weed. “
And so the Wave petunia was born.
The little white flower from South America took the English garden world of the nineteenth century by storm
It continues to do so to this day.
Rawson once said, “It was only a few years ago that they were comparatively unknown, and now no garden is considered complete without them.”
Here is a petunia called Supertunia ‘Pretty Much Picasso’ from Proven Winners in my backyard. [below]
How many petunias did you grow this summer?