Top Plant Picks February 2021 - Cheekwood
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Top Plant Picks February 2021

We may be gearing up for spring, but these featured winter plants are not to be missed! Cheekwood’s Plant Collections Manager, Shanna Jones, shares her top plant picks for February. Use this as your guide as you explore the grounds!

Bushy Bluestem (Andropogon glomeratus)

Bloom Time: September – February

Sun Requirement: Full sun

Water Requirement: Medium – wet

Wildlife: Provide food & nesting material for birds and small mammals.

Tolerates: Deer

Native to North America: Yes

Other: Excellent winter interest. Ideal for rain gardens and other low lying areas.

Zones: 5 – 9

Location: Howe Garden


Wintersweet (Chimonanthus praecox)

Bloom Time: January – March

Sun Requirement: Full sun – part shade

Water Requirement: Medium

Wildlife: Birds enjoy the fruit.

Tolerates: High resistance to disease and insects.

Native to North America: No

Other: Fragrant & showy blooms provide winter interest.

Zones: 7 – 9

Location: Carell Dogwood Garden


Common Filbert (Corylus avellana)

Bloom Time: March – April

Sun Requirement: Full sun – part shade

Water Requirement: Medium

Wildlife: The nuts are a good food source for squirrels and birds.

Tolerates: High winds and shade.

Native to North America: No

Other: The male catkins display ornamental value in winter.

Zones: 4 – 8

Location: Carell Dogwood Garden


Texas Sotol (Dasylirion texanum)

Bloom Time: July

Sun Requirement: Full sun

Water Requirement: Dry

Tolerates: Deer

Native to North America: Yes

Other: Tough, evergreen plant with attractive round shape composed of blue-green spines. Perfect for rocky soil gardens.

Zones: 7 – 11

Location: Sigourney Cheek Literary Garden


Chinese Paperbush (Edgeworthia chrysantha)

Bloom Time: February – March

Sun Requirement: Part shade

Water Requirement: Medium

Wildlife: Early emerging bees and butterflies seek the pollen in late winter.

Native to North America: No

Other: Extremely fragrant. Wonderful use as a specimen plant or a small mass planting.

Zones: 7 – 9

Location: Bracken Foundation Children’s Garden


Possumhaw (Ilex decidua)

Bloom Time: May

Sun Requirement: Full sun – part shade

Water Requirement: Medium

Wildlife: Birds, deer, & possum feed on the berries.

Tolerates: Clay Soil

Native to North America: Yes

Other: Works well in the landscape as a specimen or a hedge component. Also a good selection for wet areas.

Zones: 5 – 9

Location: Turner Seasons Garden


Eastern Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana ‘Burkii’)

Sun Requirement: Full sun

Water Requirement: Medium

Wildlife: Birds enjoy the berries.

Tolerates: Deer & drought

Native to North America: Yes

Other: ‘Burkii’ is a male cultivar. The foliage presents a purple tinge in the fall and winter months.

Zones: 2 – 9

Location: Bracken Foundation Children’s Garden & Sigourney Cheek Literary Garden


Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica x fauriei ‘Muskogee’)

Bloom Time: July – September

Sun Requirement: Full sun

Water Requirement: Medium

Wildlife: Butterflies

Tolerates: Drought

Native to North America: No

Other: Mildew resistant. Exfoliating, handsome bark, in a combination of shades, provides a gorgeous backdrop to the garden in all seasons.

Zones: 6 – 9

Location: Bradford Robertson Color Garden

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