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Trillium ludovicianum

Debatably a native to east Texas, this trillium is better known from Louisiana so it is used to heat and humidity. It prefers moist but well-drained woodland garden conditions, such as on a berm with supplemental irrigation during dry spells. It dies back in late spring/early summer but will re-emerge in February the following year.

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Agave sp. ‘Miquihuana Silver ’

At first glance, young plants might resemble just another common silvery blue agave abundant in the area’s landscapes. However, once this plant gains some size, it is a real standout with an elegant form to the 6 feet long leaves, most of which point straight up, creating a vase-like shape. Unlike the more common silver species, this great selection maintains a clean matte coloration free of blemishes. It’s one of John’s favorite agaves, as of yet unidentified, that he collected around Miquihuana, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

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Litsea japonica

very rare in cultivation, this slow-growing shrub is among the few that maintains a dense form in medium shade without pruning. Blue-green above with fuzzy golden undersides, is attractive foliage is reminiscent of the cool-climate big-leaf rhododendrons that we can’t otherwise grow here, and therefore lends a unique presence in the garden you’d otherwise expect in the Pacific Northwest. With such amazing foliage, you won’t care that the flowers are tiny and ornamentally insignificant.

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Neobuxbaumia polylopha

Visitors at first assume this cactus is a saguaro, but aside from not being able to grow them here, it differs from the famous cactus of Arizona by tolerating our humidity (with excellent drainage) and having no arms – remaining a single column. Unlike other cacti that tend to branch when the top is cut or damaged, this one will still resume with only a single growing tip. Hardy most winters in our area, ours did get some damage this past cold snap when we got into the teens. I have since read the former Yucca Do Nursery’s listing for this species that recommends covering the upper (softer) tip of the plant when dips into the teens are expected, either with a paper bag or wrapping with frost blanket. If only I had known (but now you know!). Offered are seedlings about 5” tall.

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Tephrosia lindheimeri – Lindheimer’s Hoarypea

Extending from the area west of Austin south into the tip of Texas and adjacent Mexico, Tephrosia lindheimeri is a groundcover pea with dusty silver-green foliage and blindingly intense magenta color from late spring through summer. Happy in dry, sun-baked ground, it needs no further care after some initial watering to establish it. In the winter it dies back to a thick woody rootstock, but quickly rebounds in spring, with individual plants carpeting a 4’ square area. Great as a groundcover among Agaves and cacti. Offered are gallon pots starting to spread nicely.

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Quercus acutissima – Sawtooth Oak

Everyone admires our massive sawtooth oak along the creek, which is among one of the earliest specimens John planted back in the 70’s after he received it from legendary plantsman Lynn Lowrey. This deciduous Asian oak is more commonly planted in states further east but is still highly underutilized in Texas. Its dense crown of leaves with serrated edges casts dense shade once it starts getting some height. The acorns are held in bristly caps that resemble bird’s nests. For an oak, it is reasonably quick growing, especially if planted young. Seedlings in quart pots available.