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Catalog R

RANUNCULUS repens Pleniflorus (Double Buttercup). 15".

Vigorous and handsome groundcover for sun, part shade. Z4. Gold variegated Buttered Popcorn needs restraint!

RHEUM (Rhubarb). We have the edible kind, and palmatum var. Tanguticum, which is chiefly ornamental, having showy reddish flowers and purple-tinged leaves. This makes a fine large specimen plant for full sun. TIP: Even on the edible varieties, the leaves are poisonous if eaten; best to cut them off right in the patch, and lay them around the base of the plant; they will smother weeds and return nutrients to the soil.

RODGERSIA. Large, bold plants with summer flower plumes similar to Astilbe. Aesculifolia has palmate leaves and broad pyramids of creamy pink flowers. Pinnata supposedly more refined. Needs rich, but well-drained, soil and light shade. See also Astilboides.

ROSCOEA purpurea. Matthew says he bought it because everybody needs a plant named Roscoe, but its really part of his scheme to make rock gardeners of us all. Large, purple, hooded flowers. Its described as robust by growers.

RUDBECKIA (Yellow Coneflower, Black Eyed Susan). Black Beauty is a unique tall (to 48) selection, named for its black cones, ringed by a gold band. New in 2003. PPAF.

Fulgida Goldsturm (Gold Storm) is the best known cultivar. Its foliage is dark green and neat while the flowers have the delicacy of the wild Black Eyed Susan, which is a biennial with poor foliage. Goldsturm is truly perennial and multiplies by crown growth as well as by seed (though there will be slight differences in plants from seed). We are very fond, too, of the species triloba--many small flowers on a 3-4' bush. It just keeps going and going...but seeds a lot!

Let's not forget the large-flowered, rough-foliaged species known popularly as Gloriosa Daisy. The Indian Summer strain puts on a good show, as does Toto--Indian Summer's little brother, at 12-15". The gloriosa daisies are often short-lived, but promote themselves from seed.

Maxima is a 5-ft beauty with grayish leaves and dark yellow petals surrounding a large cone. Our absolute favorite is nitida Herbstsonne (Autumn Sun). It has lemon yellow single blooms with a lime green cone; it flowers for a long period. It has behaved well here for several years, making a 5 ft. plant that stands tall through all kinds of weather. Propagate it by division; seedlings are not as sturdy.

RUELLIA humilis (Wild Petunia) is a 12-24 Midwest native with 1-2 lavender flowers in July and August. Half hardy.

RUMEX sanguineus (Red-Veined Dock). 15. This is a member of the sorrell family which has striking young leaves and makes a nice accent or groundcover in sun. Zones 5 9.

RUTA (Rue). Blue Mound attains similar size and shape to Silver Mound artemisia. Its blue-green foliage is similar to that of columbine, but finer. A welcome variation in texture and color. Yellow flowers are insignificant. Sun and sandy soil make it happiest.