Monday, September 9, 2013

Desperately seeking dark “evergreen” foliage hardy in USDA zone 8…

Aeonium 'Zwartkop' - not hardy

I’m addicted to dark leaves. Love them, can’t get enough of them. However most of them are either not hardy in my zone 8 climate or not evergreen (either losing their leaves for the winter or dying back to the ground). What’s the story?
Albizia julibrissin ‘Summer Chocolate' - deciduous
Canna NOID - dies back in the winter
Canna NOID - dies back in the winter
Canna x generalis 'Tropical Bronze Scarlet' - dies back in the winter

I’ve put on my research cap and tried to get to the bottom of this mystery. There must be a reason, right? But sadly I haven’t been able to answer my own question. Can you? Why aren't there any great evergreen leaves that are dark and hardy in USDA zone 8? Is it so obvious I’m going to be embarrassed when someone tells me why? (Like why you don’t see many all white leaves on plants).
Colocasia NOID - marginally hardy, dies back in the winter
Cordyline NOID - marginally hardy and evergreen!...will make it through a mild winter
Cotinus ‘Royal Purple' - deciduous
Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens' - my fall back plant for dark evergreen (and hardy) foliage!
Pennisetum purpureum 'Vertigo' - not hardy
Pennisetum purpureum 'Vertigo' - not hardy
Pseuderanthemum 'Rubrum' - not hardy

In the mean time I’ll appreciate my black mondo grass and hope for a mild winter. I‘d love hear about your favorite hardy, evergreen and dark foliage plants!
Zingiber malayensis - not hardy (front view)
Zingiber malayensis - not hardy (back-lit)

All material © 2009-2013 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.

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