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Trial Garden

Explore an abundance of cultivars in this new Garden that showcases our research and plant evaluation processes.

Changing annually, the Trial Garden puts new cultivars and combinations to the test.

Which Plant is Your Favorite?

Your opinion is of great value to Longwood and the horticulture community including gardeners, nurserymen, and plant breeders. Knowing which plants or combinations the public prefers allows our designers to create remarkable displays and helps the industry focus their efforts. When you visit the Trial Garden, be sure to stop by our voting station and cast your ballot for your favorites. We’ll tally the results and publish them here.

Voting Has Now Ended and The Trial Garden is Closed for the Season.

This summer’s Trial Garden featured 26 beds, each with a different combination of plants. Each bed was designed by various members of Longwood staff, who selected three to eight plants from a list of over 160 plant species and cultivars. Guests selected their three favorite combinations out of the 26 on view. Results are posted below.

2015 Trial Garden Winners

First Place: Hot Hot Hot!
Designer: April Bevins, Senior Gardener

  • Canna 'Mohawk'
  • Colocasia esculenta 'Elena'
  • Ipomoea batatus 'Sweet Caroline Sweetheart Light Green'
  • Pelargonium 'Cante Ros' Caliente® Rose
  • Tagetes erecta 'Moonsong Deep Orange'
  • Zinnia 'Yellow Flame' Zowie!™

Second Place: Prairie Sunset
Designer: Sam Hoadley, Gardener

  • Agastache cana 'Sinning' Sonoran Sunset®
  • Agastache mexicana 'Kiegador' Acapulco® Orange
  • Artemisia 'Powis Castle'
  • Carex flagellifera 'Toffee Twist'
  • Emilia coccinea
  • Nassella tenuissima
  • Pennisetum villosum
  • Verbena bonariensis

Third Place: Green With Envy
Designer: Maddie Maynor, Greenhouse Grower

  • Alternanthera ficoidea 'True Yellow'
  • Angelonia angustifolia 'PAS782746' Serena® Blue
  • Cyperus papyrus 'King Tut'
  • Euphorbia 'Ineupdidaz' Diamond Delight™
  • Ipomoea batatas 'NCORNSP-014BWPI' Sweet Caroline Bewitched
  • Scaevola aemula 'Saphira' Blauer Facher
  • Solenostemon scutellarioides 'Dark Star'
  • Solenostemon scutellarioides 'Gold Anemone'
History of this Garden

This Garden was formerly dedicated to groundcovers, ornamental grasses, vines, and roses. The ornamental grasses have remained in the Garden, but have been relocated to the easternmost bed where they are displayed in long, naturalized sweeps. The new Trial Garden is located within the greater Idea Garden.