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A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Wednesday - July 16, 2014

From: Moseley, VA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Lists, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Cutting Garden Plants for TN
Answered by: Anne Van Nest

QUESTION:

I would like to know what would be in a year round cutting garden in Nashville, TN for a novel I am writing.

ANSWER:

The first place to go to find a list of potential perennial native plants for a cutting garden for your TN-based novel is our Native Plant Database. Use the Combination Search feature instead of Recommended Species. This will provide a bigger selection with much more choice to narrow down. The volunteers and staff at the Wildflower Center who maintain the database have put together an extensive database of plants and their characteristics for you to review.

Under Combination Search, select the following categories: TN, Habit – herb (for herbaceous), Duration – Perennial, Light Requirement – Sun.

This search criteria will give you many native perennial plants to consider for a cutting garden.

An alternate way to get a pool of plants to consider is to visit the recommended special collection of native plants for Tennessee. Then select herb and full sun.

Of these plants, the following have good potential for use in a cutting garden in full sun.

Achillea millefolium (common yarrow)

Asclepias tuberosa (butterflyweed)

Baptisia australis (blue wild indigo)

Conoclinium coelestinum (blue mistflower)

Coreopsis lanceolata, Coreopsis tinctoria, or Coreopsis verticillata

Echinacea purpurea (eastern purple coneflower)

Gaillardia pulchella (firewheel)

Liatris punctata (dotted blazing star) or Liatris spicata (dense blazing star)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinal flower)

Lupinus perennis (sundial lupine)

Monarda didyma (scarlet beebalm)

Physostegia virginiana (fall obedient plant)

Rudbeckia hirta (black-eyed Susan)

 

From the Image Gallery


Common yarrow
Achillea millefolium

Butterflyweed
Asclepias tuberosa

Blue wild indigo
Baptisia australis

Lanceleaf coreopsis
Coreopsis lanceolata

Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

Indian blanket
Gaillardia pulchella

Dotted blazing star
Liatris punctata

Cardinal flower
Lobelia cardinalis

Sundial lupine
Lupinus perennis

Scarlet beebalm
Monarda didyma

Fall obedient plant
Physostegia virginiana

Black-eyed susan
Rudbeckia hirta

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