October Means Mums for Tryon Palace Gardens

Mums are here! Why do garden mums have names that sound like bad burlesque stage names? We have no idea, but it certainly helps to remember the ones you don’t want to see again next year (Never again will a Camille dance in a garden of mine). No Dazzling Stacy, Spicy Cheryl or Nutty Fiona for us this year. We are hoping for a spectacular show from Wanda Purple, Wanda Lavender, Red Ryder, Frosty Cheryl, Wilma Yellow, Hailey Orange, Chelsey Coral, and Chelsey Pink. 

Our staff has been busy working in preparation for the Fall Heritage Plant Sale Friday, Oct. 9 and Saturday, Oct. 10. We have brought in a beautiful selection of grasses, evergreens, and hydrangeas from Casey’s in Goldsboro. There is a limited supply of white Lady Banks roses and wisteria “Amethyst Falls.” 

Featured in every gardening magazine last spring, we kept a wisteria for planting on the grounds. It lived up to the hype, smells great, and has a cute burgundy bloom.

In the nursery yard the asters are blooming, the ornamental cabbages are full, and there are tons of perennials that will be discounted for the fall plant sale. Some look a little rough right now but will be much happier next spring after a good winter nap in your yard. Fingers crossed for good weather Mumfest weekend but remember, the sale goes on rain or shine. 

Even if you don’t come for the Mumfest Kickoff Concert Friday, Oct. 9, or the plant sale, you should visit the gardens (free admission Oct. 9-11) for the divine fragrance of the “Fragrant Osmanthus” (Osmanthus fragrans). Sporting little cream-colored blossoms down the stem, this large shrub’s lemony smell wafts across the grounds and can be found in the Wilderness Garden near the Latham Garden, in the Stanly House Garden, and in the Daves House Lawn. 

If you can’t wait until the sale to shop, visit the now shaded garden area of the Museum Store at the North Carolina History Center for ornamental cabbages, dianthus, fall blooming perennials, and discounted hanging foliage baskets while they last. 

In September the pansy and viola plugs came in so our greenhouse is busting at the seams now. When there is more room in the nursery after the plant sale we will bring them outside to harden before we begin the winter planting frenzy with winter hardy annuals and spring bulbs. 

If you can’t get enough landscaping work done at home and want to share that experience (plus a few others like clearing drains, throwing away mums, ripping out the last of the summer annuals before planting the winter ones, or spreading pine straw) with the Tryon Palace gardeners, please check the volunteer webpage for information on becoming a garden volunteer. Look for opportunities in November to help with decorating for the 2015 Candlelight Christmas as well! 

Happy Gardening!

Freda Pyron
Tryon Palace Gardens and Greenhouse Manager


  • Ageratum/mistflower (Conoclimium coelestinum), blue
  • Asters (Aster frickarti and Symphyotrichum sp.), blue, pink
  • Balloon flower (Platycodon grandiflorus), blue
  • Blanket flower (Gaillardia puchella), red and yellow
  • Butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa), yellow, orange 
  • Cape leadwort (Plumbago capensis), blue
  • Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), purple, black seed heads for birds
  • Confederate Rose (Hibiscus mutabilis), white to pink
  • Crinum lily, pink, white
  • Dahlias, yellow, burgundy, mix 
  • Fall crocus (Colchicum sp.), Pink 
  • False sunflower (Heliopsis helianthoides), yellow
  • Four o’clocks (Mirabilis jalapa), fuchsia, yellow, pinks
  • Garlic chives (Allium tuberosum), white
  • Gaura (Gaura lindheimeri “Whirling Butterflies” & “Sparkle White”), pink, white
  • Ginger lily (Hedychium coronarium), white
  • Golden rod (Solidago sp.), yellow
  • Green-headed coneflower (Rudbeckia lacinata), yellow
  • Japanese anemone (Anemone japonica), pink
  • Lantana (Lantana camarara), yellows, orange, lavender, pink
  • Lion’s Ear or Dagga (Leonotus leonurus), orange
  • Mexican bush sage (Salvia leucantha), fuzzy purple
  • Mexican hat (Ratibida columnifera), yellow, brown
  • Mealy cup sage (Salvia farinacea), blue
  • New Bern lily (Lycoris radiate), red sans foliage 
  • Okra hibiscus (Hibiscus esculentus), coral
  • Oxblood or schoolhouse lily (Rhodophiala bifida), red 
  • Patrinia (Patrinia scabiosaefolia), yellow
  • Pineapple lily (Eucomis comosa “Sparkling Burgundy”), burgundy foliage
  • Pineapple sage (Salvia elegans), red
  • Purple heart (Setcreasea pallida) 
  • Rain lily (Zephryanthes sp), pink, white, yellow
  • Salvia Greggii (Salvia greggii), red 
  • Salvia “Hot Lips” (Salvia microphylla), red and white  
  • Salvia “Indigo Spires” (Salvia farinacea longispicata), indigo
  • Sedum (Sedum x), yellow
  • Swamp sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius), yellow
  • Tatarian aster (Aster tatarica), blue
  • Texas Star hibiscus or rose mallow (Hibiscus coccineus), red
  • Toad lily (Trycirtis hirtaa), purple
  • Turk’s Cap (Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummuondii), red


  • Coral honeysuckle (Lonicera sumpervirens), native, red and yellow
  • Crossvine (Bignonia capreolata), orange 
  • Hyacinth bean or lablab vine (Dolichos lablab), purple bloom with purple seedpods
  • Morning glory (Ipomoea purpurea “Grandpa Ott”), purple
  • Morning Glory (Ipomoea tricolor), blue with white throat
  • Trumpet vine (Campsis grandiflora), orange


  • Knock out Roses (Rosa “RADrazz”) — Old Blush Rose (Rosa chinensis) pink
  • Heirloom Roses: 
    • “Safrano,” yellow
    • “Marie Van Houtte,” white
    • “The Fairy,” pink
    • “Heritage,” pink 
    • “Duchess de Brabant,” pink
    • “Perles des Jardin,” yellow
    • “Crème la Cerumois Superior,” red
    • “Souvenir de la Malmaison,” light pink
    • “Champney’s Pink Cluster,” light pink
    • “Dark Lady,” deep red
  • David Austin varieties 

Kitchen Garden

Look for the hyacinth bean or lablab (Dolichos lablab) with purple blooms and seed pods growing on the center fence. Winter crops are being planted. Gourds, pears, apples, sunflowers, onions, Swiss chard, mints, cardinal basil, oregano, thyme, salad burnet, pineapple sage, garden sage, “Munstead” lavender, winter squashes, peppers, cabbages, collards, lettuce, radish, turnips, spinach


  • Angeloina “Serena Mix”
  • Annual phlox (Phlox drummondii), mix    
  • Basil “Floral Spires,” lavender
  • Begonia dragon wing, red
  • Cigar plant (Cuphea)
  • Cosmos (Cosmos bipinnatus), orange, yellow
  • Dusty Miller “Silver Dust,” gray
  • Gomphrena (Gomphrena globosa), purple
  • Love lies bleeding (Amaranthus caudatus), burgundy 
  • Mexican sunflower (Tithonia diversifolia), red and orange
  • Old-fashioned petunia (Petunia integrifolia), magenta
  • Ornamental millet “Purple Baron”
  • Pentas, “Graffiti,” violet, white, pink
  • Wishbone flower (Torenia founrieri), blue, white, purple
  • Zinnia (Zinnia elegans), various

Trees & Shrubs 

  • Azaleas, “Encore”:
    • “Rhodendron Hybrid”
    • “Autumn Amethyst,” lavender
    • “Autumn Angel,” white
    • “Autumn Chiffon,” pink
  • Beautyberry (Callicarpa americana), purple berries
  • Butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii), purple
  • Chinese mahonia (Mahonia fortunei), yellow
  • Climbing rose “Old Blush” (Rosa chinensis), pink 
  • Crape myrtles (Lagerstroemia sp), pink, white, red 
  • Fragrant osmanthus (Osmanthus fragrans), yellow
  • Knockout roses (Rosa “RADrazz”)
  • Pomegranate (Punica granata), coral, orange
  • Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus), white, lavender
  • Spanish bayonet (Yucca aloifolia), white
  • Red buckeye (Aesculus pavia), leaves and nuts beginning to fall 
  • Tea plant (Camellia sinenses), white