Spring Meadow Nursery, the manager of Proven Winners ColorChoice flowering shrubs, will be adding ornamental trees to its collection of woody plants in the 2019 growing season.
Spring Meadow has partnered with the horticulture firm UpShoot, owned and run by longtime industry professional Maria Zampini. The former president of Lake County Nursery Inc. and her families’ retail garden center, Champion Garden Towne, Zampini grew up in the tree business and learned from the best - her late father Jim Zampini who spent a lifetime breeding, selecting and introducing trees.
"Maria Zampini is the perfect person to organize and run the Proven Winners tree program," said Spring Meadow general manager Jeremy Deppe. "She knows what makes a great tree and understands the supply chain. Our Proven Winners growers and retailers have been asking for trees, but we wanted to do it right.”
The new Proven Winners ColorChoice ornamental tree program will begin with six selections that fit the Proven Winners standards of beauty and performance. Chosen for their landscape worthiness, the six varieties were selected for good scale, form and multi-season interest. The new ornamental tree program is geared toward garden centers, homeowners and residential landscapers.
Ornamental fruit-bearing selections include dwarf, disease-resistant crabapples Lollipop Malus, with a tight, compact head, prolific white flowers and tiny, red fruit and Show Time Malus, with florescent fuchsia-red flowers and red fruit. The program will also feature two outstanding flowering cherry cultivars. Pink Snow Showers Prunus, a vigorous grower with clean pink flowers and dark green leaves and Weeping Extraordinaire Prunus which features extra-large, double light pink fluffy blooms.
Also joining the list of Proven Winners ColorChoice ornamental trees will be Avalanche, an Asian birch (Betula x) with proven borer resistance. It has tan and pink young bark maturing to exfoliating white and dark green foliage that turns bright yellow in fall. Golden Shadows pagoda dogwood (Cornus alternifolia), is a small native tree with vibrant variegated foliage, white spring flowers and red-orange new growth. Crusader hawthorn (Crataegus crus-galli) is a thornless, disease resistant, rugged urban street tree with multi-season interest including spring flowers, colorful fall foliage and bright red fruit.
“We will continue to grow a wide selection of varieties that offer different color, habit, features, seasonality and adaptability to different sites -- all that are worthy of the Proven Winners brand,” Zampini said. “Proven Winners already has a great network of growers, but any tree grower can participate by purchasing liners. We are working with some excellent bare root liner producers and propagators.”
Growers, propagators and retailers interested in offering Proven Winners ColorChoice trees should contact Zampini directly. Nurseries that are licensed to propagate and sell some or all of the varieties include Blue Heron Farm, Bountiful Farms, Hans Nelson & Sons Nursery Inc., John Holmlund Nursery, Robinson Nursery, J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co., Sester Farms, Inc., Spring Meadow Nursery, and Willoway Nurseries Inc., with more nurseries signing on this season.
Zampini's UpShoot, LLC is a boutique horticulture marketing firm specializing in the sales, licensing and marketing of new plant introductions to North America, Canada, Europe and Australia. UpShoot also provides marketing services for gardening related products to both trade and consumer audiences.