Four-Star Plants for your Garden


The Toby

Hundreds of stunning, new plants are introduced each year for the home garden. Whether they bring excitement or disappointment depends in part on a rigorous evaluation process before introduction. For nearly 25 years, the Chicago Botanic Garden has evaluated and recommended the best plants for Midwestern gardens. Richard Hawke will discuss the importance of comparative trials and present a variety of perennial and woody plants such as coneflowers (Echinacea), betonies (Stachys), garden phlox (Phlox paniculata), bellflowers (Campanula), panicle hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata), and clematis.

Richard Hawke is the Plant Evaluation Manager at the Chicago Botanic Garden, and is responsible for the comparative evaluation of over 1,200 taxa of herbaceous perennials, vines, shrubs, and small trees, including the oversight of a 16,000 sq. ft. green roof trial. The Plant Evaluation Program is one of the largest and most diverse in the nation, and also one of the few programs in the United States that formally evaluates perennials. Hawke has managed the Plant Evaluation Program since 1986. He has a horticulture degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has worked at several Midwest botanical gardens, including the Paine Arboretum in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, and The Holden Arboretum in Kirtland, Ohio.

Supported by the IMA Horticultural Society.

Indianapolis Museum of Art 4000 Michigan Rd., Indianapolis, IN