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New for 2016 – Hot Colors

Each year we introduce new plants, and 2016 is a banner year for new Proven Winners® varieties. We have 43 new annuals and I want to give you a quick introduction to each of them.  However, with 43 plants I am going to break them into three different groups based loosely on color. 

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, I am going to include tons of pictures with ideas to inspire your own creativity.

Contributors: Kerry Meyer


Campfire Fireburst Bidens

I have an affinity for plants with hot colored blooms.  These bright shades are great for summer planters and garden beds. Let’s start with our new Bidens Campfire Fireburst.  The scarlet-red and golden-yellow bicolor blooms are fun and unique and the plant is very heat tolerant.  When the temperatures get cool in the fall the flowers turn burnt orange.

Perfect Happiness - Tones of copper, white, orange and red create a lovely combination.

Peach Pie - This combination can work any time of the year with its rich peach and pumpkin tones. The black is just enough to make everything pop!


Mystic Illusion

Dahlias are beloved for very good reasons—the large flowers, a wide range of colors and lots of blooms on each plant are just a start.  Our new series – Dahlightful, along with Mystic Illusion dahlia gives us our first four Dahlias for Proven Winners®Let’s start with Mystic Illusion, which is probably my favorite Dahlia ever and for good reason.  It has demonstrated very good heat tolerance, which can be an issue with Dahlia.  Add in flowers that are as close to neon yellow as you can get in nature and deep black foliage and you get pure WOW!  It does well in both landscapes and containers.  It is a good-sized plant, so if you use it in a combination, think large – you’ll want to start with a container at least 14” in diameter.



The Dahlightful series are smaller than Mystic Illusion but they share dark foliage, which in this series ranges from dark green to more-or-less true black.  Two of these fall loosely in the hot colors category.  

Dahlightful Georgia Peach has dark green foliage that turns pure black in all-day sun.

That’s Peach - peach and purple might not seem like a natural combination of colors, but the deep eggplant purple of Ablazin’ Purple Salvia is a great counterpoint to highlight the softer shades of peach and orange.

Caramel Truffles - The yellow and peach tones contrast beautifully with the bright fuchsia pink – it’s absolutely lovely.

Dahlightful Sultry Scarlet -  The soft red tones of this dahlia grace plants with foliage that reminds me of roses, but black instead of green.  It is a completely classic look.

Scarlet’s Dream - Orange, red and chartreuse create a wonderfully bright, yet restrained color combination.



If there is a plant that inspires more impulse buys than Gerbera daisy, I’d be shocked.  The large, brilliantly colored flowers are catnip for plant lovers of the human variety.  The only drawback has been their summer performance, which was, well, dismal.  Not so anymore, because our Hello! Gerbera changes all of that.  These plants will bloom cheerfully through the summer heat.  They are great landscape plants and also do well in containers.  They love the sun and have huge flowers in bright colors.

If you take the time to cut yourself a bouquet once a week, you’ll not only bring their beauty inside, but you will also increase the number of flowers you’ll get throughout the season.  Let’s call it stealth deadheading.  You don’t need to deadhead to keep the plants in flower, but cutting off some flowers will promote more blooming. 

We have four colors in the series:

Hello! Magentamen
Hello! Miss Scarlet
Hello! Sunshine

They are great in combinations, but really these stars don't need a supporting cast to make a statement.

River Sunset - The bold Magenta of Hello! Magentamen is set off perfectly by the deep black foliage of Sweet Caroline Bewitched After Midnight.  The combo is both gorgeous and simple.

Zen – this is a great example of a combination that uses the gerbera.  Pumpkin orange combines with bright yellow and chartreuse for a bold statement.



Another brand new series of Proven Winners® is Mojave® Portulaca which comes in 5 colors:  Mojave® Fuchsia, Mojave® Pink, Mojave® Red, Mojave® Tangerine and Mojave® Yellow.  Portulaca are brightly colored, extremely drought tolerant, super heat tolerant and just as tough as can be.  If you love easy, no care plants, this series is just what you are looking for!  They are versatile enough to work in landscape beds and containers, whether alone or in a combination. You can see some examples of Mojave® in combinations above when I talked about Hello!  gerbera.


Sometimes you unexpectedly fall in love, and for me Sunsatia® Blood Orange Nemesia is one of the plants I didn’t think I’d love, but I absolutely do.  The range of color is from golden orange, through pumpkin and into vermillion.  It is eye-catching, ever-changing and absolutely lovely.  This is a plant that can take a really hard frost while still happily blooming, which makes it a natural for early spring and fall plantings, while having the heat tolerance to flower through the summer as well.  It is most often used in containers, but is a fine landscape plant as well.

Afternoon Bliss - If you like your combinations to be chameleon-like, a bit different every time you view them, then this combo is just the ticket.  Not only does Sunsatia® Blood Orange change over time, so does Supertunia® Honey.  It’s so much fun!

Mix It Up - Red is a natural to mix with orange, on a color-wheel they are next door neighbors.  The deep shade of Supertunia® Black Cherry is a great way to add depth to the oranges of Sunsatia® Blood Orange.



Supertunia® Honey is the last of our new annuals for this year and it is a beauty.  The colors of these blooms range from yellow through pink and amber and into coral tones.  The color changes in part due to environment, in part due to fertilizer and in part due to moisture.  Every time you look at it you will see something different.  As with all Supertunia® petunias it is wonderful both in the landscape and containers, especially in combination planters.











With its color-changing capacity it makes an ideal plant to highlight alone in a container. It is, however, really fun to play with in containers.

Refreshing - This is a variation on Afternoon Bliss, with just one ingredient different.  Instead of the white from Superbells® Frostfire we have the green and cream variegation of Graceful Grasses® ‘Sky Rocket’.

Hawaiian Island - In my experience the coral tones are most prominent with cooler temperatures.  If you like the full range of color adding in Superbells® Coralina will ensure that the coral tones sticks around all summer long.

Sun Kissed – This interesting combination uses the solid bronzy-red foliage of ‘Sweet Caroline Red’ to add depth to the design.

For more 2016 new introductions, see also Cool Hues and Tonal Greens and Fun and Flirty Bi-colors.

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