Carolee's Herb Farm

Carolee's Herb Farm

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Miniature Plants Print E-mail

One of the fastest growing trends in horticulture today is the popularity of miniature plants.  Railroad gardens and fairy gardens have been growing in numbers across the land, and both these formats call for mini-sized plants for a small-scale landscape.  Add to this the increased number of apartment or condo dwellers with little room to garden, and the skyrocketing interest in container growing, and it is obvious that the demand for these fascinating little gems is on the rise.

My interest in miniature plants began years ago with Fairy Gardens.  In the past, it was difficult to find plants that fit the landscape scale for a 4” fairy.  Tiny thymes, babies tears, violets and Irish moss were some of the easy-to-find plants that fit, but many perennials were just too large.   So, the search was on for reliable perennials in miniature size.  Each year, I’ve added a variety or two to my collection.    Breeding programs that select for dwarf size, as well as discoveries by plant-finders around the world have led to the boom in the number of miniatures that are now available.   The result is that there are now many plants that stay very petite.

This year, I’ve decided to set aside a special section in the plant sales area just for these mini-treasures.  Here’s a few of my favorites that you’ll want to look for.  For flowering perennials, miniature coral bells with masses of  flowers on dainty 8” stems can’t be beat.   For bright blue blooms, there’s  6” mini-columbines, and tiny bellflowers only 4” tall.  can’t be beat.  Everyone raved when our miniature hosta bloomed with its lavender bloom, only 6” tall last summer.  Elfish “Mrs. Holt” veronica is only 3” tall, with small spikes of pink blooms in May-June.  Have you ever seen miniature spiderwort?  Well, come see it in 5” dwarf plants of either pink or purple-blue blooms!

For lovely foliage color, try our miniature salad burnet with dark purple leaves.  Or, the nearly black leafed, ferny foliage of the tiny “Fairy Fern” that’s great in containers, troughs or small gardens.  Golden Pearlwort grow a whopping 4”, with small white flowers in June-Aug.  It also works well between stepping stones.  6” “Whitehill” Saxifraga has white blooms over 2” rosettes of blue-green leaves, flushed red at the center.

The interesting leaves of “Little Pickles”……………

There’s lots more, so if you are interested in tiny plants for troughs, railroad or fairy gardens, containers or just want a lot of plants in a small space, you’ll find just what you’re looking for.