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Report From An Opinionated Gardener – March 28

My Belgica honeysuckle (Lonicera periclymenum ‘Belgica’) is filled with swollen buds that catch the light of the setting sun. Once again my heart is captured by this plant. I love this variety of honeysuckle because it blooms throughout the summer as long as I clip off spent flowers, and even when I forget to deadhead the red seeds are attractive. I’ve never seen mildew on this plant, even when I grew it in part-shade.

The ‘Belgica’ flowers are fragrant and are the perfect companion to “Collette’ climbing roses. Every time I rave about this plant I get emails from people asking, “Where can I buy this plant?” Sometimes it’s hard to find a place to send these folks. Why?

Why do we trip over the often-mildew-ridden ‘Goldflame’ honeysuckle in garden centers and never see ‘Belgica’? Why do some plants receive a full court press of media attention and others, equally worthy, get no notice at all?

I know that anyone who has patented a plant has a vested interest in promoting that particular variety. Fair enough. But aside from those current horticultural celebrities, why are some cultivars left in the dust? There are no answers here, but merely a simple plea to try plants that you hear are worthy, and then to talk them up in order to keep them available.

See a photo of this vine with the ‘Colette’ climbing rose in my garden here. Like what you see? Tweet it, send it to your facebook friends and yes, talk about this plant to fellow gardeners: Belgica honeysuckle is a great vine for your garden.

Long bloom, fragrant, no mildew...what are you waiting for?

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