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The Media Dictate Garden Fashion

Though we may think we are original in our garden design or garden style,  the media often dictate garden fashion.

Philadelphia nurseryman Thomas Meehan wrote in 1870 in his magazine Gardener’s Monthly “We are advocates of fashions in flowers as well as of fashions in dress. Still, so far as fashions in flowers are concerned, we feel that our magazine, and others like it, rule, or ought to rule the leader of fashion. The great public are too lazy to think for themselves, or unable to do it.”

I must say that I agree with Meehan.  The garden that I cultivate often shows a new plant variety I first learned of in the media.

This summer is no exception.

The new Rudbeckia ‘Cherry Brandy’ is growing in my garden for the first time.  I love it.  You can also see it nearby in a mass planting at the gardens of Prescott Park in Portsmouth, NH.

The ‘Cherry Brandy’ came from England’s Thompson and Morgan plant breeders after a 15-year testing period.  This plant won a Fleuroselect Novelty Award as well.

Park Seed now sells it in the United States.  Their spring catalog reads, “After growing Cherry Brandy, you’ll never look at Rudbeckia the same way again.”

I must say that the flower does catch your atention. When I first saw, I couldn’t believe that it was a Rudbeckia.

So here I am wrting about a new annual, from England, now selling well in the United States, and I grow it in my own garden.

I guess that makes me someone who follows what flower is in fashion, much like Meehan mentioned in 1870.


A bed in Portsmouth, NH's Prescott Park planted at the front with Rudbeckia 'Cherry Brandy".


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