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More Than Mums

More Than Mums

By Delilah Onofrey, Suntory Flowers
Photographs courtesy of Suntory Flowers

Fall is a great opportunity to refresh your plantings. While chrysanthemums continue to be the mainstay, garden retailers are offering more annuals, perennials and grasses to provide color and texture. One plant that is a great choice to transition from summer to fall is Granvia bracteantha – the super strawflowers from Suntory. 

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They tolerate hotter and cooler temperatures and will stay in bloom longer than mums. In fact, even after the plant succumbs to a hard frost, you will still have bright dried flowers! Granvia makes a stunning statement planted en masse in landscapes and as a thriller in large container plantings. Just three plants will fill out a large whiskey barrel-style pot.

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This summer, we saw Granvia planted in many demonstration gardens including the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens. These vigorous varieties dwarf the standard bedding bracteanthas, reaching more than two feet tall. Granvia Gold in particular makes a striking contrast next to blue and purple varieties. We also liked seeing Peachy Keen paired with Surdiva Purple scaevolas. We also saw a fun Barbie planter featuring Granvia Pink.

Granvia colors available this year include Gold, Pink, Peachy Keen and Harvest Orange. Next year, two more colors will debut – Crimson Sun and White.

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Gardening Tips

Bracteantha are perennials, but only hardy to USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 10-11 and treated like annuals in most climates.

One thing that’s deceiving about a living “dried” flower is these plants do need water and can be quite thirsty in a planter. Best positioning is full sun for maximum flowering. Plant in large containers or beds, the more soil volume, the better.

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Throughout the growing season, you can harvest Granvia blooms for dried flower crafts. If you harvest the flowers before they are fully opened, they will open as they dry. Sometimes you can get them to dry in a partially opened stage, which is also attractive with an origami look. Dried blooms will hold their color for more than a year.

Granvia bracteanthas provide lasting color for three seasons, spring through fall. For more information, visit GRANVIA - Suntory Flowers


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