Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (2023)

Table of Contents
Introduction Annuals Annual Vinca Blanket Flower Brazilian Verbena (improved cultivars) Coleus Corkscrew Rush Cuphea (species and cultivars) Dakota Gold Sneezeweed Diamond Frost®Euphorbia Fan Flower Firebush Firecracker Flower Magilla™Perilla Margarita Sweet Potato Mexican Zinnia Pink Crystals Ruby Grass Purple Fountain Grass Silver Falls Dichondra Spider Flower Spilanthes Star Flower, Graffiti®Series Summer Snapdragon Supertunia®Vista Bubblegum®Petunia Wishbone Flower Summer Wave®Series Yellow Bells Perennials Anise Hyssop Arkansas Bluestar Autumn Sage Catmint Coral Bells or Alum Root Evening Primrose Gaura Giant Coneflower Golden Variegated Sweet Flag Hellebore Indian Pink Japanese Painted Fern Mexican Feather Grass Milkweed Mugwort Perennial Plumbago Phlox, Volcano®series Prinz Heinrish Japanese Anemone Purple Coneflower Rattlesnake Master Sedges Switchgrass Toad Lily Verbena Shrubs American Beautyberry Barberry,Columnar Forms Blue Muffin®Viburnum Bush Clover Buttonbush Chaste Tree Chokeberry Crossvine Deciduous Holly Diabolo®Ninebark Dwarf Palmetto Flowering Quince, Double Take™Series Glossy Abelia Japanese Kerria Juniper Collection Koreanspice Viburnum Mexican Buckeye Oakleaf Hydrangea Pink Velour®Crapemyrtle Red Yucca Seven-son-flower Southern Waxmyrtle Specialty Fruit for Small Spaces Spirea Sumac Variegated Yucca Virginia Sweetspire Winter Jasmine Trees American Elm Arizona Cypress Bald Cypress Black Gum Bosnian Pine Bur Oak Caddo Sugar Maple Cedar Elm Chinese Pistache Chinkapin Oak Crabapple Deciduous Magnolia Cultivars Desert-willow Escarpment Live Oak Fringetree Ginkgo orMaidenhair Tree Hedge Maple Hornbeam Indian Cherry Japanese Zelkova Jujube or Chinese Date Kentucky Coffee Tree Limber Pine Persian Parrotia Redbud Shantung Maple Shumard Oak Silver Linden Teddybear®Southern Magnolia Winterberry Euonymus FAQs Videos

Published Apr. 2022|Id: E-1052

By Lou Anella, David Hillock, Mike Schnelle

    Jump To:
  • Introduction
  • Annuals
  • Perennials
  • Shrubs
  • Trees

Introduction

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (1)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (2)

Started in 1999, Oklahoma Proven is a plant evaluation and marketing program designed to help consumers select the best plants for their Oklahoma Gardens. The goal has been to select plants that are tolerant of the varied and challenging environmental conditions found throughout Oklahoma, since using well-adapted plants should lead to greater gardening success and more environmentally friendly gardens. Drought resistance has become an important selection criteria for landscape materials, and many of the selections highlighted in this guide are recognized for their low water usage. The following symbols are used to feature special attributes of the plants.

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (3)

Native: Plant indigenous to the continental U.S. or a cultivar or hybrid derived from native plants.

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (4)

Wildscape: Plant possesses one or more characteristics ideal for habitation by birds, butterflies or other animals.

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (5)

Drought resistant: After initial establishment period (up to two years), plant can withstand short-term drought.

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (6)Collector's Choice: This plant will do well in Oklahoma but may need special placement or a little extra care. It will be very rewarding and impressive in the garden.

The coordinators of the Oklahoma Proven program would like to thank the following for their cooperation and/or financial support:

  • Current and Past Executive and Advisory Committee Members
  • Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture
  • Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service, Oklahoma State University
  • Oklahoma Nursery and Landscape Association
  • The Botanic Garden at Oklahoma State University
  • The City of Oklahoma City Utilities Department

Although the plants presented here are among the best for use in Oklahoma, this is just a place to start. There are many plants suited for use in Oklahoma and it is always imperative to match the environmental tolerance of the plant with the environmental conditions in a particular garden or even a particular spot in the garden.

Oklahoma Proven plants have been selected to withstand environmental stress but remember that all plants need special attention during the establishment phase or during periods of environmental extremes.

For more information, visit: www.oklahomaproven.org

Authors: Lou Anella, David Hillock and Mike Schnelle
Editors: Kevin Moore and Justin Quetone Moss

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (7)
Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (8)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (9)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (10)

Annuals

Annual Vinca

Catharanthus roseus

Annual vinca, which also goes by Madagascar periwinkle and other common names. Annual vinca tolerates the heat and humidity of the southwest. It is tolerant of low Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (11)fertility soils and is drought tolerant. Full sun and warm soil temperature is required for this species to thrive. Annual vinca is subject to chill injury, which predispose them to root diseases. Avoid planting too early in the spring. Flower colors come in shades of white, pink, red and purple. Plants grow 6 to 12 inches tall and 8 to 24 inches wide, depending on cultivar. Improved cultivars provide an abundance of flowers on stocky plants and disease resistance, which is very important with this species. Improved cultivars include plants in the Cora® series, Mediterranean series, Titan™ series and many others.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Well drained, slightly dry

Hardiness: Use as annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (12)

Blanket Flower

Gaillardia

Gaillardiais a genus of native wildflower that has captivated gardeners with its brightOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (13) red and yellow flowers and ability to bloom in hot, dry conditions. The native species,Gaillardia pulchella, is Oklahoma’s state wildflower and makes an excellent garden plant. Hybrids (Gaillardiaxgrandiflora) and new cultivars have been introduced that expand the color range and form ofGaillardiaincluding: ‘Goblin’ (dwarf form), ‘Fanfare’ (interesting trumpet-shaped flowers around the central disc), ‘Arizona Sun’ (compact plants with a long period of bloom) and ‘Summer’s Kiss’ (yellow-apricot flowers), among others.Gaillardiais often a perennial but also reseeds readily, creating drifts of color in the garden or meadow. Allow the seed heads to dry on the plant for maximum reseeding and floral display the following summer.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (14)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (15)

Brazilian Verbena (improved cultivars)

Verbena bonariensis Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (16)

Commonly called Brazilian vervain, this plant is a rapid-growing, clump-forming tender perennial. Plants typically form a 1-foot tall basal clump of dark green leaves from which rise erect, slender, wiry, branching stems to 3.5 feet tall bearing clusters (to 2 inches across) of tiny rose-violet flowers. Though a tender perennial, it oftengrows as an annual in Oklahoma. If planted in sheltered locations with southern exposures, plants can survive mild winters. Even if plants do not survive winter, they often remain in gardens for a number of years through self-seeding. Plants have no serious insect or disease problems, though watch for powdery mildew. This species is very heat and drought resistant andmakes a great cut flower and attracts butterflies and hummingbirds. Improved cultivars include 'Little One,' 'Lollipop' and Meteor Shower®.

Exposure: Full sun/part shade

Soil: Poor soils, good drainage

Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (17) Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (18)

Coleus

Plectranthus scuteleriodesOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (19)

Coleus is a time-honored plant that is quite diverse and full of character. It is well known for its attractive foliage colors, patterns, and forms and has long been a great color plant for shade as well as indoor as a houseplant. Many cultivars are now full sun tolerant and are one of Oklahoma’s best full sun foliage plants. Remove flower spikes as they appear. Pinch plant stem tips to keep plants compact and to promote bushiness. Cultivars range in size from dwarf 6” tall plants to large mounded 36” tall plants. If grown as a houseplant, it requires bright light. Aphids, whiteflies, and spider mites, especially on indoor plants can sometimes be a problem.

Exposure: Full sun to shade

Soil: Moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Use as an annual

Corkscrew Rush

Juncus effusus‘Big Twister’

Corkscrew rush with its uniquely twisted stems, though relatively small (18 to 24 inchesOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (20) high and wide), still commands attention in any garden space. The stems curl and spiral, creating a tangled but showy mass. Corkscrew rush grows in full sun or part shade and prefers moist soils. Happy even submerged in water, it is perfect for a water garden. Corkscrew rush also is an excellent accent plant for containers. Though considered hardy to about zone 6, it tends to be more of a tender perennial in our area. Its annual nature may be due to the dry winters and the drastic temperature fluctuations often experienced in Oklahoma.


Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Very moist to wet, acidic
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (21)

Cuphea (species and cultivars)

Cuphea spp.Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (22)

Cuphea is a genus of about 260 plants native to the warm temperate and tropical regions of the Americas. Depending on the species and cultivar, they go by several common names such as firecracker plant, cigar flower, Mexican-heather, bat flower, bunny ears, candy corn plant, and false heather. Cuphea is a tender perennial grown as an annual in Oklahoma. It is low maintenance and it istolerant to heat and drought. Plant foliage is bright green to blue-green and typically glossy. Although the flowers are small, they are abundant and provide a spectacular show all summer long with no need to deadhead. Plants come in a variety of forms with a variety of flower colors and forms that are vivid and produce a sweet nectar that attracts hummingbirds, butterflies, and other pollinators.

Exposure: Full sun

Soil: Moist, well-drained; tolerates drier soil after establishment

Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (23)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (24)

Dakota Gold Sneezeweed

Helenium‘Dakota Gold’

Common names forHeleniuminclude sneezeweed and bitterweed. It is a native Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (25)wildflower of Oklahoma. ‘Dakota Gold’ is a cultivar with excellent ornamental qualities that is also very tough and tolerates heat and dry conditions. ‘Dakota Gold’ grows as low, 6- to 8-inch mounded cushions of fine, dark green foliage covered with golden yellow flowers all summer long. ‘Dakota Gold’ looks great in beds, containers, rock gardens, borders and as an accent.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (26)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (27)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (28)

Diamond Frost®Euphorbia

Euphorbia‘Inneuphdia’

Diamond Frost®euphorbia is a fine-textured mounding plant used as an annual in Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (29)Oklahoma. The simple white flowers bloom from spring until first frost and the plant forms a 2- to 3-foot sphere. Diamond Frost®can be used as a mass planting, alone in a container or mixed with almost any other plant. Its fine sprays of foliage and flowers will weave through other plants, making it a perfect complement for almost anything from poinsettias to petunias. It is an excellent background plant, filler or specimen, proving to be an extremely beautiful and versatile introduction.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (30)

Fan Flower

Scaevola aemula

Fan flower is an evergreen tropical used as an Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (31)annual in temperate climates. This low-growing plant carpets the ground with flowers all season long when grown in full sun. Its primary flower colors are pink, yellow, lavender and white. It prefers a moist, well-drained soil but is quite drought tolerant once established. Dwarf and standard sizes are available.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (32)

Firebush

Hamelia patens

This Central and South American native is a small tree when grown Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (33)in the Deep South, but is best used as a heat-tolerant annual in Oklahoma. The lush green foliage can produce a dense mound over 3 feet high in full sun. Color is added by the interesting orange-red flowers and the reddish tinge on the leaf petioles. Firebush thrives in the summer heat and attracts hummingbirds and butterflies to the garden.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (34)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (35)

Firecracker Flower

Crossandra infundibuliformis

Firecracker flower is native to India and Sri Lanka, where it is a tropical evergreen subshrub that grows 1 to 3 feet tall. Flowers are apricot to salmon pink in color and Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (36)form in terminal racemes. Yellow- and red-flowered forms are also available. Plants bloom throughout the summer and attract pollinators. Leaves of firecracker flower are shiny dark green. ‘Orange Marmalade’ has long-lasting blooms on a plant that thrives with heat and humidity. Large clusters of frilly, bright orange flowers shine against the glossy green foliage. Firecracker flower prefers light, organically rich, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun or part shade, but will tolerate a bright full shade area. Plants thrive in warm, humid weather and have no serious insect or disease problems. Firecracker flower is beautiful in beds, borders, containers or as a houseplant.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Magilla™Perilla

Perilla frutescens

Known for its brightly colored leaves of dark purple to hot pink and green, Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (37)Magilla™perilla is a vigorous annual. Magilla™perilla is a coleus look-alike, is in the same family as coleus, and has similar characteristics and growing needs. The species, Perilla frutescens, can be weedy, but Magilla™is well behaved due to sterile seeds. It grows into a 24-inch tall mound and is heat tolerant. Magilla™perilla looks great in beds, mixed borders and is spectacular in a container planting.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Margarita Sweet Potato

Ipomoea batatas‘Margarita’

Margarita sweet potato is a spreading vine with chartreuse Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (38)leaves. It is excellent as a ground cover or as a potted plant. This striking cultivar tolerates full sun to partial shade and can grow to 8 inches tall and 20 feet long. It is shown here with fan flower and purple fountain grass, other Oklahoma Proven selections.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (39)

Mexican Zinnia

Zinnia angustifolia

Several cultivars of Mexican zinnia are available with Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (40)white, yellow, pink or orange flowers that bloom all summer. All thrive in the heat, are mildew resistant and make excellent 1-foot-tall compact plants for containers, bedding or edging.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (41)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (42)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (43)

Pink Crystals Ruby Grass

Melinis nerviglumis‘Savannah’

Pink crystals ruby grass is a warm-season grass that likes it hotOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (44) and performs best in those conditions. Growing only 18 to 22 inches tall, it is an attractive ornamental grass with blue-green foliage and ruby-pink blooms with glistening silky hairs in late spring. Flowers retain their color even when dried and may be used for cut flower arrangements. Pink crystals ruby grass is excellent in beds, borders and is spectacular in a container planting.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Purple Fountain Grass

Pennisetum setaceum‘Rubrum’

Growing 3 to 4 feet high, this heat- and drought-tolerant plant blooms all Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (45)summer until frost. It provides a dramatic accent in sunny beds and borders. It has purple leaves and bristled flower spikes, providing color and texture throughout the season.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (46)

Silver Falls Dichondra

Dichondra argentea‘Silver Falls’

‘Silver Falls’ dichondra was selected for its very low-growing, creeping, trailing Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (47)habit and beautiful silvery gray leaves that are shaped like miniature lily pads. ‘Silver Falls’ is actually a selection of a dichondra species native to southwest Texas and Mexico, so it is quite heat and drought tolerant. Growing only 2 inches tall and 3 to 4 feet wide, it is an attractive groundcover, but is also spectacular in a container planting or hanging basket, spilling over a retaining wall or when used in a rock garden.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (48)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (49)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (50)

Spider Flower

Cleomehybrids

Spider flower is a unique plant with palmately compound leaves, and interesting, Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (51)fragrant flowers with an old-fashion look. Flowers have abnormally long stamens that give the flower a frilly look and is likely where the common name of spider flower comes from, since they resemble spider legs. Flower colors come in shades of white, pink and purple. Plants can grow 3 to 6 feet tall, depending on cultivar. Improved cultivars provide an abundance of flowers on stocky plants. Improved cultivars include plants in the Sparkler™series; the Spirit™series; Senorita Rosalita®(vivid pink blooms); and Senorita Blanca®(white blooms with pale lavender blush). Spider flowers attracts butterflies and hummingbirds and goes well with a cottage style, wildflower design or mixed border.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (52)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (53)

Spilanthes

Acmella oleracea‘Peek-A-Boo’

‘Peek-A-Boo’ spilanthes was selected for its yellow flowers, each with a red eye Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (54)poking up out of the foliage. The green foliage has a purple tinge in full sun, turning more purple as fall approaches. The foliage can be used in salads or cooked as a green. Spilanthes is also known as the toothache plant because it has been used to numb pain. In the garden, it is a great conversation piece when combined with other plants in a mixed container or it can be used as a flowering groundcover. It grows 12 to 15 inches tall and spreads 24 to 30 inches.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Star Flower, Graffiti®Series

Pentas lanceolata

Considered to be the most uniform in habit as well as bloom time, Graffiti®comes in several colors including pink, purple, bright red, rose and white. It grows to 16 inches Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (55)high and 12 inches wide, making it a great plant for containers or in a flower bed. Graffiti®plants are very heat- and drought-resistant and make great cut flowers. With its tightly clustered flowers that sit above the foliage in bright colors that have an abundance of nectar, Graffiti®pentas are a sure attractant for butterflies and hummingbirds throughout the summer months. Like all pentas, Graffiti®prefers soil that is not too rich; if it’s a bit on the dry side, all the better. Heat, sun and good drainage will have the plants blooming heartily all summer long.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moderately moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

(Video) Oklahoma Proven: Buttonbush

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (56)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (57)

Summer Snapdragon

Angelonia angustifolia

Summer snapdragon is a tropical subshrub that can be used as an annual in Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (58)Oklahoma and will bloom from summer until the first frost. Orchid-like flowers are produced on 2-foot-tall spikes. Depending on cultivar, flower color ranges from blue to purple, pink or white, with bicolor forms also available. Summer snapdragon may be used as a bedding plant, to add color to a mixed border or in a container. It is drought tolerant and loves full sun and summer heat.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (59)

Supertunia®Vista Bubblegum®Petunia

Petunia ‘Ustuni6001’

Supertunia®Vista Bubblegum®is a vigorous petunia that requires very little care once established. Unlike some other petunias, Vista Bubblegum® is a self-dead-headingOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (60) variety that blooms continuously until the first killing frost. With its bright bubblegum pink flowers, Vista Bubblegum®is a mounding, trailing form that grows to 18 to 24 inches high and just as wide. It looks spectacular spilling over the edge of a container or retaining wall, or spreading out in a flower bed. For the most vigorous plants, fertilize them with a slow-release fertilizer at planting, then follow up throughout the summer with a water-soluble fertilizer applied when watering. Even though no dead-heading is needed, Vista Bubblegum®responds well to a light trimming in early July.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Wishbone Flower Summer Wave®Series

Torenia

The Summer Wave® series is a collection of hybrid Torenia, or wishbone flower, that Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (61)thrive in the summer heat. The plants form a mound that is 6 inches high and 12 inches wide that is great for the border, in a pot or mixed with other plants in a larger container. The Summer Wave®series is comprised of the following cultivars: ‘Amethyst,’ ‘Blue,’ ‘Large Violet’ and ‘Lavender Blue.’ Each produces flowers from spring until fall, and each flower has a wishbone shape at its center, thus the name.

Exposure: Partial shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Yellow Bells

Tecoma stans

Yellow bells is a tropical shrub used as an annual in Oklahoma. Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (62)It can reach a height of 3 feet and produces striking yellow flowers above glossy green leaves from summer until frost. Give this plant a southern exposure; it loves the heat and sun.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: Use as an annual

Perennials

Anise Hyssop

Agastache foeniculum‘Golden Jubilee’

‘Golden Jubilee’ is a cultivar of the North American native commonly known as anise Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (63)hyssop. It was selected for its chartreuse foliage, was named to commemorate HM Queen Elizabeth II’s golden jubilee and was the 2003 All-America Selections flower award winner. Reaching 2 feet tall and 1 foot wide, ‘Golden Jubilee’ produces light purple flower spikes from early summer to fall. Although a perennial, it will reseed in the garden and new plants also will be golden. As an added bonus, brushing against the foliage releases the plant’s licorice scent.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (64)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (65)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (66)

Arkansas Bluestar

Amsonia hubrichtii

Arkansas bluestar is native to eastern Oklahoma and Arkansas, but does well Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (67)throughout the state. It is tolerant of moist soils and is quite drought tolerant once established. Flowers are sky blue, star-shaped and develop in clusters at the end of each branch in early spring. Leaves are needle-like on upright stems that sway in the breeze, providing a soft, wispy appearance. Foliage is bright green in summer and then seemingly overnight in fall, it explodes to a golden yellow. Amsonia grows to 3 feet high. Plant in masses for best effect. Can be used in mixed borders, meadows, native gardens and open woods.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Dry to moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (68)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (69)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (70)

Autumn Sage

Salvia greggii‘Pink Preference’

‘Pink Preference’ is a cultivar of autumn sage that was selected for its bright pink Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (71)flowers. Like the species, it is a heat- and drought-tolerant perennial that starts blooming in the spring, but blooms most in the autumn as other flowers in the garden start to fade. It forms a 2- to 3-foot mound and attracts hummingbirds and butterflies to the garden. Pruning to 6 inches high each spring will help keep autumn sage dense and full.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (72)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (73)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (74)

Catmint

NepetaxfaasseniiWalker’s Low’

‘Walker’s Low’ catmint was the Perennial Plant of the Year in 2007 and is an easy-to-grow, pest-free perennial. This hybridNepetadevelops into a mound of aromatic,Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (75) grayish-green foliage. Lavender-blue flowers appear in spring and continue to bloom if properly pruned by trimming after initial flowering. ‘Walker’s Low’ grows 1 to 2 feet high and 1 ½ to 3 feet wide and can be used as edging or in a border, herb or rock garden, naturalized area, as groundcover or is quite attractive spilling over the edge of a wall.Nepetaattracts bees and butterflies. It also tolerates some shade; dry, rocky soil; and is quite drought and deer resistant.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (76)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (77)

Coral Bells or Alum Root

Heuchera cultivarsOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (78)

Coral bells are a versatile perennial with attractive foliage and bell-shaped flowers native to North America. Foliage comes in an array of colors and forms and are evergreen to semi-evergreen, depending on winter temperatures, often providing interest year-round. The leaves are the real show of this plant, and in addition to the many colors they come in, some have marbled patterns, dramatic veining, silverly overlays, and ruffled edges. Flowers are produced on wiry stems above the foliage in the spring to early summer. Flower colors can range from pink to red and white and are favored by butterflies and bees. It prefers fertile, moist soil but is quite drought tolerant once established; however, due to shallow roots, water during dry spells. Avoid wet, soggy soils particularly in winter.

Exposure: Full sun/part shade

Soil: Moist, well drained

Hardiness: USDA Zone 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (79)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (80)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (81)

Evening Primrose

Oenothera macrocarpa‘Comanche Campfire’

This species of evening primrose is native to western Oklahoma and ‘Comanche Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (82)Campfire’ was selected for its ability to produce beautiful yellow flowers above red petioles and silver foliage. It is touted as a xeriscape perennial since it thrives in well-drained soil and, once established, requires little moisture. As a low-growing, clumping perennial, ‘Comanche Campfire’ reaches a height of 15 to 18 inches and spreads to 2 feet. Use it in a rock garden or along the edge of a perennial bed.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (83)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (84)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (85)

Gaura

Gaura lindheimeri‘Siskiyou Pink’

Gaura is a drought-tolerant perennial that thrives in the heat Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (86)and humidity of the South. Although the species produces white flowers, the cultivar ‘Siskiyou Pink’ has bright pink flowers that appear on airy, 3- to 4-foot-tall sprays early in the spring. Blooming will continue until fall if old flower spikes are removed.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (87)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (88)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (89)

Giant Coneflower

Rudbeckia maxima

Giant coneflower is native to eastern Oklahoma, but does well throughout the state. Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (90)It is tolerant of moist soils and is quite drought tolerant once established. Giant coneflower has waxy, silvery-blue foliage. Flowers have bright yellow ray flowers that dangle from a large, upright, dark brown cone on stems that reach 5 to 6 feet high. Giant coneflower blooms in early summer but dead-heading the spent blossoms will encourage another flush of blooms in late summer. Plant in masses for best effect. Can be used in mixed borders, meadows, native gardens and open woods. This species makes a strong vertical statement in the landscape.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (91)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (92)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (93)

Golden Variegated Sweet Flag

Acorus gramineus 'Ogon' Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (94)

Acorus gramineus is commonly called grassy-leaved sweet flag. It is native to wetland areas of China, Japan, Korea, India, Thailand, Myanmar and the Philippines. 'Ogon' is a dwarf plant that features iris-like tufts of narrow, grass-like, variegated leaf blades (6 to 12 inches tall and 1/4 inch wide), which are striped with yellow and green but primarily appear as yellow. Sweet flag is easily grown in average, medium to wet soils in full sun to part shade and performs well in both boggy conditions and consistently moist garden soils. Never allow soils to dry out. Plants appreciate some relief from hot summer sun (e.g., afternoonshade or filtered sun) when grown in hot summer climates. Foliage is sweetly fragrant when bruised (hencethe common name of sweet flag).

Exposure: Full sun, part shade

Soil: Medium to wet

Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Hellebore

Helleborus

Hellebores, also known as lenten rose, belong to a genus of mostly evergreen Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (95)herbaceous plants that are prized for their ability to flower in late winter. The flower stalks rise out of the leaf litter or through the snow to display nodding flowers that range in color from green to white, yellow or even purple with some cultivars producing spotted flowers. Recently, hybrids have been selected for outward-facing flowers and brighter colors, increasing their garden value. Hellebores are tough plants requiring little special care other than shade and pruning of old foliage. They are excellent for the woodland garden as understory plants, where they will be protected by shade.

Exposure: Shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Indian Pink

Spigelia marilandica

Indian pink, also called pinkroot and woodland pinkroot, is a native species to the Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (96)southeastern U.S. It is an excellent plant for shady gardens. Indian pink is an upright, multi-stemmed clump-forming perennial that is 1 to 2 feet tall and 1 ½ feet wide with bright, glossy green leaves. Numerous flowers appear in late spring/early summer and are tubular, deep red with a contrasting yellow throat that flares at the tip to form five-pointed lobes (a yellow star). Indian pink grows in part shade to full shade in moist soils, but does really well in full sun and is quite drought tolerant once established. Use Indian pink in a woodland garden, perennial border, rain garden or native garden. Hummingbirds and butterflies are attracted to the beautiful, tubular flowers.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Dry to moist
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (97)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (98)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (99)

Japanese Painted Fern

Athyrium nipponicum

Japanese painted fern is a deciduous perennial growing toOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (100) 12 inches tall. It can be used in shaded perennial gardens or massed as a ground cover. Cultivars are available, each with its own pattern of red and silver variegation.

Exposure: Part to full shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Mexican Feather Grass

Nassella tenuissima

Mexican feather grass is a fine-textured clumping perennial that waves it silvery Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (101)flowers in the slightest breeze. It is drought tolerant and tough despite its refined appearance. It forms a clump almost 2 feet tall and 3 feet wide as the leaves arch to the sides. It tolerates a wide variety of conditions, but prefers well-drained soils. It does not like to be cut to the ground in spring like other grasses. Remove only the top third of the plant to rejuvenate. It is native to prairies in Texas, New Mexico and south to central Mexico. It may reseed in the garden.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (102)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (103)

Milkweed

Asclepiasspecies

Asclepiasspecies are the milkweeds. Many are native to America and are well adapted to many soil types. Best known as the host plant for monarch butterflies, milkweeds Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (104)have gained a lot of attention lately. Efforts across the country to reestablish lost habitat to help save the declining monarch population is taking the front stage for gardeners, butterfly enthusiasts and conservationists. Butterfly milkweed,Asclepias tuberosa, is the most popular with bright orange to yellow-orange flowers on upright stems growing 1 to 3 feet tall. Butterfly milkweed was named the 2017 Perennial of the Year by the Perennial Plant Association. Milkweeds in general grow in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun, are very drought tolerant and have no serious pest problems. Grow in native plant gardens, wild gardens, meadows, naturalized areas, perennial borders and cottage style gardens.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (105)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (106)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (107)

Mugwort

Artemisia‘Powis Castle’

With dense mounds of lacy silver foliage, this Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (108)perennial reaches a height of 3 feet tall and remains evergreen during mild winters. It is prized for its feathery foliage and drought tolerance.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (109)

Perennial Plumbago

Ceratostigma plumbaginoides

Perennial plumbago, also known as leadwort, is a neat, well-behaved plant that grows Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (110)8 to 12 inches high and spreads to 18 inches, making it welcome at the front of a mixed border or massed as a ground cover. Its cold hardiness is much better than true plumbago. The terminal clusters of blue flowers appear from summer through fall when the foliage turns a bronze-red before going dormant for the winter. It is best to use perennial plumbago in a well drained soil and to cut old stems to the ground each spring for vigorous regrowth.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5

Phlox, Volcano®series

Phlox paniculata

Phlox Volcano®is more compact, fragrant and powdery mildew tolerant than other garden phlox types. Plants develop sturdy stems 24 to 28 inches tall, with deep green Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (111)leaves and an abundance of large flowers that appear from June to September if plants are cut back after initial bloom. Flower colors range from red, pink, ruby, white, lavender and purple; flowers may also have eyes of pink, red or white. They can be bicolored such as with ‘Lilac Splash.’ It does not mind most soils, but needs well-drained soil; irrigate with soaker or drip irrigation to keep foliage dry. Full sun is the best exposure for Volcano®phlox, but it will grow in part shade. Too much shade and poor air circulation increases chances of mildew developing, though it does not seem to inhibit flowering. Once established, phlox is very adaptable. It is grown as an accent, in groups or masses. It also works well in native plant gardens, wild gardens, meadows, naturalized areas, perennial borders and cottage style gardens. Butterflies and hummingbirds are attracted to the colorful, fragrant flowers.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (112)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (113)

Prinz Heinrish Japanese Anemone

Anemone hupehensis var. japonica‘Prinz Heinrich’Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (114)

Prinz Heinrich Japanese anemone is an excellent perennial for late summer to early fall color that grows best in a part shade location or spot protected from the late afternoon sun and winds; in full sun and dry conditions, the foliage will often burn. It prefers fertile, consistently moist soil that is neutral to slightly alkaline with good drainage; avoid wet soils, particularly in winter. In too much shade the flower stems tend to flop. Flowers are semi-double, rose-pink, with narrow overlapping tepals surrounding a central cluster of golden-yellow stamens. Flowers are produced on long, upright, wiry but graceful branching flower stems that arise above the basal foliage. The plant grows to about 28 inches high and spreads by rhizomes.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Moist, well drained

Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (115)

Purple Coneflower

Echinacea purpurea‘Magnus’

‘Magnus’ purple coneflower is known for its rose-colored Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (116)flowers that appear in early summer and sporadically until frost. ‘Magnus’ is a clump-forming perennial that grows 2 to 3 feet tall. Use this heat- and drought-tolerant perennial in a native plant garden, perennial border or as a cut flower.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 3

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (117)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (118)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (119)

Rattlesnake Master

Eryngium yuccifolium

Rattlesnake master is a native species to the tallgrass prairies. Leaves of rattlesnake master are parallel-veined, bristly-edged, sword-shaped, medium green leaves (up to 3 feet long) and resemble those of yucca. Flowers are greenish-white and tightly packed Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (120)into globular, 1-inch diameter heads resembling thistles. The flowering heads attract many kinds of insects. Seed heads persist and provide winter interest. Rattlesnake master prefers dryish, sandy soils, but tolerates clay and shallow-rocky soils. Plants tend to open up and flop in overly fertile soils or in anything less than full sun. This is a taprooted plant which transplants poorly and is best left undisturbed once established. Use rattlesnake master in a xeriscape garden, perennial border or native garden. Group plants in naturalized areas for best affect.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Dry to moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (121)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (122)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (123)

Sedges

Carexspecies

Sedges belong to the genus Carex, which is a genus of many species, most from wet Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (124)areas such as bogs. Sedges have triangular, grass-like stems and panicles of short flower spikes. Native and Asian selections are available, providing a wide range of characteristics. Foliage can be evergreen or deciduous and colors range from green, brown/rust, golden, blue to variegated. Sedges are grown in groups or masses, as a lawn substitute, in naturalized areas, perennial borders and habitat restoration. They are grown particularly in shady areas where the variegated varieties really shine. Some require damp or wet conditions, while others are relatively drought tolerant.

Exposure: Full sun to full shade
Soil: Dry to wet
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (125)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (126)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (127)

Switchgrass

Panicum virgatum

Switchgrass is native throughout North America and is a dominant species of the tallgrass prairies. It does not mind most soils and actually grows well in wet and dry locations. Full sun is the best exposure for switchgrass, but it will grow in part shade; Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (128)too much shade or rich soils may result in floppy plants. Switchgrass is a warm-season perennial, growing largely as a bunchgrass 3 to 6 feet tall, but may spread by rhizomes or self-seeding. Switchgrass has an upright, stiff form overall. Flower panicles are open, lacy sprays, with a purplish tint that persists into the winter. Leaf color is generally medium green, turning yellow, sometimes with orange tints in fall; however, several cultivars exist – ‘Heavy Metal’ has metallic-blue foliage, ‘Northwind’ is bluish-green, ‘Shenandoah’ has foliage with dark purple tips and ‘Cheyenne Sky’ turns wine red. Winter color is tan to beige. Once established, switchgrass is very drought tolerant. It is grown as an accent, in groups or masses and can be effective as a screen. It also works well in native plant gardens, wild gardens, meadows, naturalized areas, as well as rain, water and bog gardens.

Exposure: Sun, part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (129)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (130)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (131)

(Video) Oklahoma Proven Plants

Toad Lily

Tricyrtis hirta

Toad lilies are known for their very unique flowers. Flowers are pale lilac with dark purple spots that appear on upright arching stems in late summer to early fall, when many Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (132)other plants are beginning to wind down. The flowers are small, so place toad lily in a spot where they can be appreciated up close. The plant grows 2 to 3 feet high and about 2 feet wide, with bright green leaves. They are excellent for the woodland garden where they will be protected by shade. Toad lily is easy to grow, resistant to deer, somewhat drought tolerant, but grows best in moist soils, even tolerating wet conditions. Several cultivars with varying flower colors are available.

Exposure: Part to full shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 8

Verbena

Verbena canadensis‘Homestead Purple’

‘Homestead Purple’s’ deep purple flowers and trailing habit Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (133)make it perfect for hanging baskets, as a ground cover or as the foreground of a mixed border. This North American native will bloom from spring to frost, slowing down only slightly during the hottest months.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (134)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (135)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (136)

Shrubs

American Beautyberry

Callicarpa americana

American beautyberry is a native deciduous shrub that produces inconspicuous lavender flowers in mid summer. As fall approaches, the plant becomes laden with brightly colored clusters of purple fruit, producing a striking display. American beautyberry prefers light shade or protection from the afternoon sun in Oklahoma. It grows from 5 to 10 feet high and just as broad. Overgrown plants can be rejuvenated by cutting them to the ground in winter without sacrificing fruit, since the flowers are produced on new growth. This native shrub can be massed as an informal hedge, incorporated into a mixed border or used as an understory plant in a naturalistic garden setting. White-fruited cultivars are also available.

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (137)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (138)

Exposure: Part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (139)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (140)

Barberry,Columnar Forms

Berberis thunbergii

Barberries are, in general, pretty tough and offer a wide variety of leaf color. The newest forms are the columnar types of shrubs offering a vertical element in the Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (141)landscape. These forms of barberry include the Rocket and Pillar collections. Each offers upright, narrow plants in different foliage colors of golden to red and orange, growing 3 to 5 feet high and not more than 2 feet wide. Barberries prefer moist, well-drained soils, but are adaptable to a wide range of soils and, once established, can be quite drought tolerant. Barberries have no serious pest problems and require very little maintenance, making them excellent for the urban landscape. Grow columnar forms of barberry as a specimen, in groupings, in shrub borders and as a foundation planting.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (142)

Blue Muffin®Viburnum

Viburnum dentatum‘Christom’

Blue Muffin®viburnum is a small, compact version of the native arrowwood viburnum Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (143)that grows about 3 to 5 feet high and just as wide. Blue Muffin®prefers moist, well-drained soils, but is adaptable to a wide range of other soils. Established plants are somewhat drought tolerant, have no serious pest problems and require very little maintenance, making them excellent for the urban landscape. As with many viburnums, Blue Muffin®offers season-long interest with white spring flowers, dark green summer foliage that turns red and orange in fall and blue fruits the birds love in late summer/fall. Prune right after flowering, but only if necessary. Grow Blue Muffin®as a specimen, in groupings, in shrub borders, as a foundation planting or as a hedge.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (144)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (145)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (146)

Bush Clover

Lespedeza thunbergii subsp. thunbergii Little Volcano’ and ‘Gibraltar’

Bush clovers are hardy, semi-woody deciduous shrubs reaching 4 to 6 feet high and Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (147)at least as wide with arching stems. In harsh winters, it can die to the ground, but quickly comes back the following spring. Late winter or early spring pruning may be necessary to rejuvenate the plant. Flowers develop on new wood and are rosy-purple in late summer to early fall, completely covering the plant. Bush clovers perform well in sandy, infertile soil and are very drought tolerant once established; ideal drainage is essential. ‘Little Volcano,’ a selection from Japan, is more upright with dark green foliage and red-purple flowers. Foliage turns golden after bloom in the fall. ‘Gibraltar’ is a spectacular selection with long, arching stems also covered in rosy-purple flowers from late summer to early fall.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerates poor, infertile soil; excellent drainage is essential
Hardiness: USDA Zones 6 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (148)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (149)

Buttonbush

Cephalanthus occidentalis Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (150)

Buttonbush is a native shrub found growing throughout most of Oklahoma
bordering streams and lakes, except in the panhandle. It is a medium to large shrub
with a course, open-rounded habit from 5 to 12 feet tall and 4 to 8 feet wide. Leaves are dark, glossy green and lack significant fall color. Clusters of white, fragrant flowers bloom June to July and look like a pincushion. Flowers are very attractive to hummingbirds, bees, butterflies, and other pollinators and is considered a good
honey plant. Ducks and other water birds consume the seed. The round, ball-like fruit structure persists on the plant and may be reddish brown.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Moist, wet; wide varietyexcept dry

Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (151)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (152)

Chaste Tree

Vitexspecies

Vitexis a multi-stemmed large shrub, but can be trained into a small tree. Leaves are palmately compound and dark green. Flowers appear in early summer and continue to bloom sporadically through summer and fall. Flowers ofVitexcan be blue, lavender, Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (153)pink or white. Old strains had small spikes of flowers; improved varieties have large spikes (8 to 12 inches long) of colorful flowers that are fragrant and make excellent cut flowers.Vitexis not too picky of soils and is easy to grow, very heat, drought and pest tolerant and an excellent choice for a xeric garden.Vitexis often considered an excellent replacement for lilacs, which grow much better in colder climates, and it attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (154)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (155)

Chokeberry

Aronia

There are two species in the genus Aronia, red chokeberry (Aronia arbutifolia) and black chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa), both are excellent landscape plants. As their commonOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (156) names suggest, fruit color is the major difference between the two. They both produce clusters of white flowers in spring, have excellent red fall foliage, grow to about 10 feet high and thrive in almost any soil type. Black chokeberry is getting a lot of attention as a “super fruit” for its high levels of antioxidants and can be used to make juice, jelly or wine. Aronia work well massed in a naturalized setting or at the back of a border, since the stems are usually bare near the base, leaving room for garden perennials.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (157)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (158)

Crossvine

Bignonia capreolata‘Tangerine Beauty’

A true beauty, especially in the spring when ‘Tangerine Beauty’ is covered in orange, Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (159)trumpet-shaped flowers. This semi-evergreen vine can climb by twining its branches around a structure or can use its adhesive tendrils to cling to a wall, easily reaching heights of 30 feet or more. As temperatures cool in the fall, the leaves have a purple cast and are evergreen during a mild winter or in a protected spot. Beauty is not the only reason for using crossvine; it is also a tough plant, tolerant of heat and drought once established.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (160)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (161)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (162)

Deciduous Holly

Ilex decidua

Deciduous holly is a native plant typically grown as a Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (163)multi-stemmed shrub. It tolerates heat, drought and poorly drained soils and reaches a height of 8 to 12 feet. Female cultivars of deciduous holly have beautiful red to yellow berries that remain on the plant through the winter. Male and female cultivars should be planted to ensure fruit production.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Poorly to well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (164)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (165)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (166)

Diabolo®Ninebark

Physocarpus opulifolius‘Monlo’

Diabolo®is a cultivar of ninebark prized for its deep maroon foliage, which contrasts Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (167)nicely with the clusters of white flowers produced in the spring and is a great companion for gold or chartreuse-leaved plants. This deciduous shrub grows from 6 to 10 feet high and just as wide. It can be rejuvenated by pruning it to the ground in winter. Red fruit extends ninebark’s show into the fall and exfoliating bark adds winter interest. Diabolo® is a hardy and durable shrub that can be used as a screen, for massing or at the back of a border.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 2

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (168)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (169)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (170)

Dwarf Palmetto

Sabal minor

Dwarf palmetto favors the wet alluvial soil in swamps and river bottoms in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and North Carolina and is the only member of the palm familyOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (171) native to Oklahoma. This very slow-growing, ground-hugging rugged fan palm produces pale green or bluish fan-like, evergreen leaves atop spineless stems arising from a crown of underground roots and reaches 4 to 6 feet high or more. Flowers are yellowish-white in late spring followed by edible black, BB-sized fruits that taste like dates. Dwarf palmetto provides interest and variety to a damp, shaded place. Although this plant grows native in areas of high to moderate moisture, once established it is fairly drought tolerant. It is the most cold-tolerant Sabal. In the landscape, it works well as a specimen plant, in mass plantings or in containers.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade (best in part shade)
Soil: Organically rich, moderately fertile, moist
Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (172)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (173)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (174)

Flowering Quince, Double Take™Series

Chaenomeles speciosa

Flowering quince in the Double Take™series are hardy, deciduous shrubs reaching 4 Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (175)to 5 feet high and at least as wide. Plants in the Double Take™series produce a profusion of early spring double flowers that resemble camellias. This is a dense, broad-rounded, thornless shrub. Bold double flowers (up to 2 inches diameter) bloom before the leaves fully unfold in an early spring bloom and come in colors of scarlet, orange, pink and peach. Plants do not produce fruit. Oval to oblong, glossy dark green leaves provide an attractive look through the summer. Prune lightly after blooms in spring when needed. Double Take™ flowering quince is very drought tolerant once established.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils, but prefers well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (176)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (177)

Glossy Abelia

Abeliaxgrandiflora

Several new, compact forms of glossy abelia are becoming very popular. ‘Kaleidoscope’ grows 2 to 3 feet high and slightly wider. In spring, leaves appear on bright red stems Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (178)with lime green centers and bright yellow edges, but variegation does not scorch or burn in hot weather. In fall, color deepens to shades of orange and fiery red. Soft pink flower buds open to white in late spring. ‘Little Richard’ is a 3-foot by 3-foot evergreen, with vivid green leaves in summer, taking on a tangerine-pink color in fall. White flowers bloom from summer to first frost. ‘Rose Creek’ grows 2 to 3 feet high and 3 to 4 feet wide; it is evergreen with crimson stems. New leaves have a pinkish cast, maturing to lustrous dark green and turn purple in cold weather. Use abelias in containers, as formal or informal hedges, accent plants, in mass plantings or in foundation plantings under windows. Abelias also attract hummingbirds and butterflies to the garden.

Exposure: Sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained, acidic
Hardiness: USDA Zones 6 to 9, evergreen in 7 and warmer

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (179)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (180)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (181)

Japanese Kerria

Kerria japonica

Japanese kerria produces an abundance of yellow, rose-like flowers in the early spring Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (182)and sporadically through the summer. The species has single yellow flowers while ‘Pleniflora’ (shown here) has double flowers. In winter, Japanese kerria adds interest to the garden with its bright green stems and arching habit. Japanese kerria can be rejuvenated by cutting the shrub to the ground every few years.

Exposure: Part to full shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Juniper Collection

Juniperus virginiana‘Taylor’
J. chinensis‘Saybrook Gold’
J. horizontalis‘Monber’

This collection represents the very diverse genus Juniperus, which has several species Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (183)and many cultivars within each species. Junipers come in upright, spreading or low groundcover forms. ‘Taylor’ is a narrow, upright cultivar that grows about 4 to 5 feet wide reaching 15 to 20 feet tall and is excellent for tight spaces. ‘Saybrook Gold’ is the brightest gold, holding its color year round with a compact, spreading habit to about 30 inches tall and 6 feet wide. ‘Monber’ Icee Blue® is a low, mat-forming species with beautiful silver-blue foliage. In general, junipers are adapted to a wide range of soils and withstand hot, dry conditions once established.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (184)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (185)

Koreanspice Viburnum

Viburnum carlesii

Koreanspice viburnum is a small- to medium-sized shrub, offering year round interest. Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (186)In summer, the leaves are dark green and fall color can be wine-red. Flower buds are pink to red, opening to white or pink in spring and emit a wonderful fragrance. In late summer, clusters of red fruit that fade to black invite birds to the garden. Once the shrub has become established, it is quite heat and drought tolerant. Though it prefers moist, slightly acidic soils, and sun to part shade, it is tolerant of high pH soils and wind-swept conditions. It grows from 4 to 5 feet high and just as broad. Several improved cultivars are available.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (187)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (188)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (189)

Mexican Buckeye

Ungnadia speciosaOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (190)

Mexican buckeye is a native, multi-stemmed large shrub or small tree reaching 15 to 30 feet high and about 20 feet wide. Its native range is west, central Texas to Mexico and New Mexico though it is hardy to zone 7. It is rapid-growing, drought-resistant, and resistant to cotton root rot. Its fragrant, pink flowers bloom simultaneously as it leafs out with light bronze-colored leaflets which turn pale green during the growing season. Its fall color is bright golden yellow. In its spring flowering aspect, it is thought to somewhat resemble eastern redbuds. Mexican buckeye’s round black somewhat shiny seeds are contained within a coarse, dark brown 3 valved capsule which somewhat resembles buckeye (Aesculus spp.) seeds. However, the two species are not related. Bees, butterflies, and other pollinators are attracted to the flowers. The seeds are eaten by birds and other mammals.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Neutral to alkaline and dry

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (191)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (192)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (193)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (194)

Oakleaf Hydrangea

Hydrangea quercifolia

Oakleaf hydrangea produces beautiful, creamy-white, cone-shaped flowers in early Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (195)summer. This native shrub grows from 6 to 8 feet high and just as broad and has year-round interest. In fall, the oak-shaped leaves can turn purple and red, and in winter, the exfoliating bark is exposed as are the cinnamon-colored buds, that in late spring and early summer open to form large, striking flowers. Various cultivars are available and offer different aesthetic attributes.

Exposure: Part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (196)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (197)

Pink Velour®Crapemyrtle

Lagerstroemia indica‘Whit III’

Pink Velour®was developed in Oklahoma for its burgundy spring foliage. SummerOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (198) leaves have a dark purple cast and highlight the pink flowers that are formed from early July until frost. Pink Velour®forms a 10-foot high, multi-stemmed large shrub, is drought tolerant and highly resistant to powdery mildew.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (199)

Red Yucca

Hesperaloe parviflora Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (200)

Not a yucca, this member of the Century-Plant family (Agavacea) produces soft, yucca-like evergreen leaves, 2 to 3 feet in length, crowded on the perennial's short, woody base. The flower stalk rises 5 feet and bears showy, coral-colored, tubular flowers on arching, wand-like, pink stems. Leaves are plum-colored in winter; blue-Green other times. Red Yucca is drought-resistant and adaptable to a variety of soils. Deer may browse the foliage while the flowers attract hummingbirds. Hesperaloe parviflora 'Perpa,' Brakelights® Red Yucca has vibrant, red blooms, which are great color improvement to this species! Yellow flowering forms are also available. Use in mass plantings for a dramatic effect in xeriscape and waterwise gardens. Good container specimen.

Exposure: Full sun

Soil: Dry, well drained

Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (201) Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (202)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (203)

Seven-son-flower

Heptacodium miconioides

Seven-son-flower is an upright, irregular, loose and open shrub growing 15 to 20 feet Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (204)high. Leaves appear in early spring are soft green and mature to dark green. It is very attractive and pest free. Flower buds form in early summer, but do not open until late summer or early fall. Individual flowers are tiny but fragrant and attract butterflies to the garden. Sepals persist and change from green to rose-purple and are as attractive as the flowers. Bark is exfoliating, whitish, to rich brown and green. Seven-son-flower grows best in moist, well-drained, acidic soil, but seems adaptable.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (205)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (206)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (207)

Southern Waxmyrtle

Myrica cerifera

Southern waxmyrtle is a broad-leaved evergreen native to the southeast corner of Oklahoma and along much of the eastern coastal plain. It has been described as the Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (208)southern cousin of bayberry and has a similar scent when new leaves emerge in spring. It produces small but showy blue fruit. Southern waxmyrtle can be grown as a large shrub, making an excellent naturalistic screen, or can be pruned to tree form, exposing its light-gray bark. It fixes atmospheric nitrogen, making it suitable on poor soils; it withstands bog-like conditions. Narrow leaf, compact and dwarf cultivars are available, extending the possible uses for this native shrub.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (209)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (210)

Specialty Fruit for Small Spaces

Miniature peaches, columnar apples, dwarf pomegranate and dwarf patio-type blueberries

Many of the fruits we enjoy so much do not fit well in today’s urban Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (211)landscapes, especially the standard variety fruit trees. However, today’s breeding and production techniques bring us dwarf and miniature versions that fit in just about any space. Columnar apples, patio peaches, dwarf pomegranates and compact blueberries now make easy to enjoy fresh fruit right out our back door; and they are ornamental too!

(Video) 2019 Oklahoma Proven Shrub

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Prefers moist, well drained; blueberries require acidic soil (pH 5)
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 11 (varies by species)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (212)

Spirea

Spiraea japonica‘Magic Carpet’

‘Magic Carpet’ spirea is a compact cultivar from Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (213)England with dark pink flowers and reddish shoots bearing gold-tinged young foliage in spring. This shrub will remain compact, making it perfect for mixed borders, rock gardens or small-scale landscapes.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Sumac

Rhus typhina

Many sumacs are native to Oklahoma, and these selections have unique characteristics. Tiger Eyes® is bright lime green to yellow all summer, turning brilliant bronzy red in Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (214)fall. Tiger Eyes® can grow 6 to 7 feet high. ‘Laciniata’ or laceleaf sumac has deeply divided leaflets that create a fine-textured, lacey appearance and turn shades of red, orange and yellow in fall. This cultivar can grow 10 to 15 feet tall. As with any other sumac, they spread by suckers forming thickets. Fruit form in pyramidal clusters and are hairy, red, berry-like drupes that persist into winter, providing interest and food for wildlife. Flowers that bloom in spring attract bees and butterflies. These selections of sumac are all great for naturalized areas and erosion control.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained; tolerant of high pH soils and pollution
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (215)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (216)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (217)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (218)

Variegated Yucca

Yucca filamentosa‘Color Guard’

Yucca is virtually a stemless evergreen shrub native to the southeast.Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (219) ‘Color Guard’ is a gold-centered, variegated form with upright sword-shaped leaves that provide striking architectural features to the garden. Flowering stalks arise in late spring from the center of the plant bearing long, terminal panicles of bell-shaped, nodding, fragrant, creamy white flowers. ‘Color Guard’ yucca is free of pests and is tolerant of dry areas. It is excellent in borders, xeriscape plantings, containers and as an accent plant.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Dry to moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (220)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (221)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (222)

Virginia Sweetspire

Itea virginicaOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (223)

Virginia sweetspire is a native shrub to eastern Oklahoma but does well in throughout the state. It is a mound-shaped, slender-branched, deciduous shrub generally 3 to 6 feet tall and wide. Small, white, fragrant flowers bloom in spring to early summer in 4-inch spires that droop with the arching branches. Flowers open from base to tip so that the plant appears to bloom for a long time. Leaves turn red to purple in fall and persist well into the winter. Plants are found growing in the wild in moist, even wet to swampy areas and along stream banks, in acid soils, but they are not too picky of the soil type. Plants should be watered during droughts. Virginia sweetspire grows in shady areas as an understory plant, but it grows best and has better blooms and fall color if it receives full sun for at least part of the day.

Exposure: Part shade to full sun

Soil: Moist, acidic; tolerates poordrainage

Hardiness: USDA Zone 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (224)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (225)

Winter Jasmine

Jasminum nudiflorum Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (226)

Winter jasmine is often mistaken for Forsythia, but it flowers earlier and has a long-lasting floral display. It flowers as early as December before its glossy green leaves are formed. Winter jasmine is routinely semi-evergreen in Oklahoma. It can be pruned and used as a hedge, but left untrimmed, will arch gracefully forming a 4-foot-high mound spreading to 7 feet. Winter jasmine requires very little care and is easily rejuvenated by cutting it to the ground every three to five years.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (227)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (228)

Trees

American Elm

Ulmus americana

With the release of improved, disease-resistant cultivars and hybrids, American elms Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (229)are once again in demand. ‘Valley Forge,’ ‘New Harmony’ and ‘Princeton’ are a few of the cultivars available today. ‘Valley Forge’ is upright, arching, broadly vase-shaped with a full, dense canopy. ‘New Harmony’ develops into a broad vase-shaped crown with arching branches terminating in numerous slender, often drooping branchlets. ‘Princeton’ is also vase-shaped. American elms are adapted to a wide variety of soil conditions, tolerate de-icing salts, air pollution, drought and a range of soil pH. They have yellow or red fall color.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (230)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (231)

Arizona Cypress

Cupressus arizonica

Arizona cypress is a drought tolerant, evergreen tree native to southwestern Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (232)U.S. In the landscape, it usually reaches a height of only 20 to 25 feet and 15 feet wide. The foliage can be a gray-green, but usually blueish. Recently, yellow-foliage forms are available. ‘Blue Ice’ and ‘Carolina Sapphire’ are common cultivars and ‘Cookes Peak’ is a selection from Cookes Peak, New Mexico with silvery-blue foliage and pyramidal form. Arizona cypress require well-drained soil and thrive in hot, dry environments. As the tree ages, the bark exfoliates beautifully, becoming mottled with patches of burnt orange and green.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (233)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (234)

Bald Cypress

Taxodium distichum

This large Oklahoma native will lose its leaves in the fall after turning a Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (235)russet or coppery-bronze and can easily grow to 70 feet high with a 30-foot spread, however, narrow growth habit and dwarf selections are also available. Tolerant of both wet and dry soils, bald cypress makes an outstanding specimen, street tree or pond-side grove.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained to flood tolerant
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (236)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (237)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (238)

Black Gum

Nyssa sylvatica

Black gum is an eastern native, growing slowly to 50 to 60 feet high or more. They are picturesque shade trees with beautiful summer foliage and gorgeous fall color. New selections have excellent form and are more resistant to leaf spot, which can occasionally be a problem. ‘Wildfire’ (N. sylvatica ) grows slowly to 60 feet high byOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (239) 25 feet wide. New growth emerges red; leaves mature to a shiny dark green; and fall color is bright red. Fire Master™ (N. sylvatica ‘PRP1’) grows about 50 to 60 feet tall and 25 feet wide with a strong central leader; leaves turn crimson red in the fall. Red Rage™ (N. sylvatica ‘Hayman Red’) exhibits more leaf spot resistance than other cultivars and is slightly smaller, growing 30 to 50 feet tall. Flowers of black gum are insignificant, but an important nectar source for bees and pollinators. The small, black fruits that follow are loved by birds. Black gums are an excellent tree for urban and street plantings and their neat habit requires little to no pruning to maintain their excellent shape.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Average to wet
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (240)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (241)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (242)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (243)

Bosnian Pine

Pinus heldreichii

Bosnian pine is a slow-growing evergreen with a dense pyramidal form when young. It has the potential to grow to 70 feet tall in its native environment, but is more likely toOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (244) reach only 25 to 30 feet in the landscape. In the Pirin Mountains of Bulgaria, there is a 70-foot tall Bosnian pine estimated to be over 1,300 years old! Young cones are purple and turn brown as they mature. The seeds they produce are edible. Bosnian pine prefers full sun and, once established, is quite tolerant of high pH soils and drought. It is also disease resistant and can be used in the landscape where an evergreen or pine is desired and space is limited.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Tolerates dry and high pH soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (245)

Bur Oak

Quercus macrocarpa

Bur oak is an Oklahoma native that can grow to 60 feet tall, Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (246)with an even larger spread, and can tolerate drought, heavy soils and high pH soils. Bur oak can grow to be a long-lived, majestic specimen and is an important wildlife species since many animals feed on its large acorns.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 3

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (247)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (248)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (249)

Caddo Sugar Maple

Acer saccharum 'Caddo'

Caddo sugar maple is a native population of sugar maple found growing in Caddo County in southwestern Oklahoma. The leaves are dark green, deeply lobed and Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (250)leathery, making it more resistant to leaf tatter and scorch. Caddo sugar maple is also quite tolerant of high pH soils, extreme heat and drought conditions commonly found in western Oklahoma. It can reach 30 to 50 feet tall and is a beautiful medium to large shade tree. Fall color is variable, but can range from yellow to golden yellow to orange and sometimes red; cultivars selected for brilliant fall colors as well as outstanding performance are available.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (251)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (252)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (253)

Cedar Elm

Ulmus crassifolia

Cedar elm can thrive in almost any soil type, including the alkaline and heavy soils Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (254)common in Oklahoma. It is one of the more disease-resistant native elms, producing glossy green leaves in early spring that turn a muted yellow in the fall. Its form can vary from upright-oval to broadly-horizontal and it generally matures around 60 feet tall. It can be distinguished from other elms by its rough-textured leaves, corky projections on young stems and flowers and fruit produced in the fall.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (255)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (256)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (257)

Chinese Pistache

Pistacia chinensis

Chinese pistache reaches a height of 30 to 45 feet with Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (258)only a slightly smaller spread. Brilliant yellow, orange or red leaves reliably grace the tree in autumn. Chinese pistache is a tough tree tolerant of drought, heat and heavy soils.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (259)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (260)

Chinkapin Oak

Quercus muehlenbergii

A native oak growing throughout most of Oklahoma and eastward, chinkapin oakOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (261) is a rather attractive shade tree that grows 40 to 50 feet high and wide in the landscape. The tree has a nice medium texture in summer and a medium-coarse texture in winter. Bark on the stems and trunk develop into irregular blocky scales with age and is quite attractive. Leaves are a glossy, dark yellow-green in summer with varying fall color of yellow to orange-brown to brown. Chinkapin oak is adapted to various soils, even alkaline soils and is quite drought resistant and tolerant of windswept sites.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (262)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (263)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (264)

Crabapple

Malus‘Prairifire’

Few trees have as much year-round interest as the crabapple, and few Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (265)crabapples are as beautiful and disease resistant as ‘Prairifire.’ ‘Prairifire’ starts the spring with a profusion of rose-pink flowers just as the leaves emerge. As summer progresses, the leaves turn from purple-red to dark green and red fruit forms that persists well into the winter. It is resistant to diseases that affect many crabapples. It has a rounded crown and will not exceed 20 feet tall, which makes it a perfect choice for planting under utility lines or in masses.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (266)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (267)

Deciduous Magnolia Cultivars

Magnolia

Deciduous forms of magnolia are spectacular additions to any spring landscape. Among the most popular of deciduous forms are star magnolia (M. stellata) and saucer Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (268)magnolia (M.xsoulangiana), but several others are available along with their many hybrids, which provide a wide variety of flower colors from red to white, yellow, pink or purple. The most common color available is pink, but others such as ‘Elizabeth,’ an older selection with creamy yellow flowers, or ‘Butterflies,’ a newer selection with deep yellow flowers. Flowers of deciduous magnolias appear just before or while the leaves are emerging in spring. Early flowering varieties can be damaged by late frosts; avoid placing plants in a southern exposure where flowers will open early. Deciduous magnolias can range in size from small to medium shrubs to large trees.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Prefers moist, well drained, acidic, but is adaptable
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (269)

Desert-willow

Chilopsis linearis

Desert-willow is not a willow at all. It prefers dry, well-drained soils, compared to true willows, which grow along streams and ponds; in fact, it will not tolerate heavy, wet Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (270)soils. Because it likes the hotter, drier climates, it is an excellent choice for western Oklahoma. Desert-willow grows as a small tree 15 to 30 feet high and 10 to 25 feet wide. It is a loose, gangly tree favored for its colorful, funnel-shaped flowers that put on their biggest show in early summer, then bloom sporadically throughout the rest of summer. Flowers can be white, pink, rose or lavender with purple markings inside and are sweetly fragrant. Foliage is a rich green in summer with no fall color, falling early to reveal the interesting branching structure. Several cultivars exist. Desert-willow makes a great patio or small specimen tree and attracts hummingbirds and other birds.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Dry, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (271)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (272)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (273)

Escarpment Live Oak

Quercus fusiformis

Escarpment live oak is a smaller version of the coastal live oak (Q. virginiana). It grows Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (274)slowly to 20 to 40 feet high and about as wide with picturesquely gnarled branches and evergreen leaves. Escarpment live oak is native to southern Oklahoma through central and western Texas to northern Mexico, which means it is also more drought and cold tolerant than coastal live oak. Because of its slower growth, it is a perfect long-lived shade tree for smaller, urban landscapes. Branches provide excellent nesting sites for birds and small mammals. Acorns are elongated and eaten by wildlife. It is also the larval host of the hairstreak and Horace’s duskywing butterflies.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Alkaline to slightly acidic, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 6 to 10

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (275)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (276)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (277)

Fringetree

Chionanthuscultivars

Chionanthus virginicusis a deciduous, native shrub or small tree with a spreading, Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (278)rounded habit that typically grows 12 to 20 feet tall. It occurs most often in rich, moist woods and hillsides and moist stream banks. The common name fringetree refers to the slightly fragrant, spring flowers which feature airy, terminal, drooping clusters of fringe-like, creamy white petals. Fringetrees are dioecious (separate male and female plants), but also may have perfect flowers on each plant. Male flowers are showier than female flowers. Plants with perfect or female flowers may give way to clusters of olive-like fruits which ripen to a dark, bluish black in late summer and are a food source for birds and wildlife. Cultivars from the Chinese cousin,C. retusus(shown here), also are available.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (279)

Ginkgo orMaidenhair Tree

Ginkgo bilobaOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (280)

Ginkgo or Maidenhair tree is a unique tree in that its leaves are somewhat leathery, fan-shaped, with two distinctive lobes, and have almost parallel veins. The species can reach 50 to 80 feet high and 30 to 40 feet wide in ideal conditions, but they are very slow growers, and it takes decades for them to reach mature height. Ginkgo is not very picky of its growing conditions and is quite tolerant of a wide range of soil conditions and is even a great choice for the urban environment due to its tolerance to compacted soils, heat, and air pollution. Leaves of ginkgo are bright green in summer turning a beautiful bright yellow in fall. Ginkgo is dioecious (separate male and female trees). It is best to select males to avoid the fleshy covered seed of the female which is a large, fruit-like cone that can be messy and emit a noxious, foul odor after falling to the ground and splitting open. No serious insect or disease problems.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Moist, sandy, well-drained

Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (281)

Hedge Maple

Acer campestre

Hedge maple is a small to medium sized tree, slowly growing to 25 to 35 feet high and wide. Because of its small size, it is perfect for smaller urban landscapes and even Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (282)under utility lines. Hedge maple has beautiful green summer foliage that is free of ailments. Fall color is yellow to yellow-green in color. Branches often develop very low to the ground, providing excellent cover for wildlife, though it can easily be trimmed up if desired. Hedge maple is really not too picky of soils; though it prefers rich, well-drained soil, it grows well in compacted and alkaline soils. It also tolerates severe pruning and has often been used as a hedge and even walls, especially in Europe. Hedge maple is one of the tougher maples, which is underutilized in the U.S. It has few problems and is very urban tolerant. Golden leaf and variegated leaf forms are available.

Exposure: Full sun or light shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (283)

Hornbeam

Carnipus species Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (284)

The genus Carnipus includes the native C. caroliniana (American hornbeam) and C. betulus (common inthe trade. American hornbeam is a slow-growing,understory tree with an attractive globular form. It typically grows 20 to 35 feet tall. The European hornbeam grows in full sun to part shade and needs little pruning when grown as a tree, but responds well to hard pruning if grown as a hedge; it can grow to 40 to 60 feet tall with a pyramidal to oval-rounded crown, but is usually smaller when grown in Oklahoma. Both trees produce flowers as separate male and female catkins, with the female catkins giving way to distinctive clusters of winged nutlets. Leaves are dark green and can produce respectable shades of yellow, orange and red in fall. Trunks have smooth gray bark and distinctive muscle-like fluting. Upright, columnar forms are available.

Exposure: Full sun to light shade

Soil: Well drained

Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (285) Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (286)

Indian Cherry

Frangula caroliniana

(Video) All American Selection Plants in OSU's New Demonstration Garden

Indian cherry is a small tree (or large, multi-stemmed shrub) that grows Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (287)to 20 feet tall with a rounded to spreading canopy. It is native to the eastern and southeastern U.S., making it more desirable over its European cousins. The foliage is dark, lustrous green all summer and turns yellow to orange yellow in the fall. Probably its greatest asset is the colorful fruits that develop late summer/fall that turn red, then black as they mature. These beautiful, sweet fruit also attract several species of birds and can be used to make jams and jellies.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (288)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (289)

Japanese Zelkova

Zelkova serrata

Zelkova serratais a deciduous tree with a vase-shaped habit that typically grows 50 Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (290)to 80 feet tall and most often occurs in rich, moist woods and hillsides and moist stream banks. It is noted for its graceful shape, clean foliage, attractive bark and resistance to Dutch elm disease. Zelkova is often substituted for American elm (Ulmus americana) because of its resistance to Dutch elm disease. Cultivars from the Chinese cousin are also available. Some notable cultivars: ‘Schmidtlow’ Wireless®(25 feet high and 35 feetwide); ‘Ogon’ (‘Bright Park’) (golden yellow leaves, coral stems); ‘Musashino’ (narrow upright 45 feet high, but only 20 feet wide); and ‘JFS-KW1’ City Sprite™ (compact, dense, semi-dwarf 25 feet high and 20 feet wide).

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (291)

Jujube or Chinese Date

Ziziphus jujuba

Jujube, also known as Chinese date, is an excellent small- to Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (292)medium-sized tree with shiny green foliage in summer and yellow leaves in fall. The naturally drooping tree is graceful, ornamental and often thorny with branches growing in a zig-zag pattern. Jujube can grow to about 15 to 30 feet high. It makes a great landscape tree with the added benefit of edible fruits. Commonly grown cultivars include ‘Li’ and ‘Lang.’ Fruit are round to elongate and mature from green to red, when they have a sweet, crisp flesh somewhat similar to an apple. After maturing to red or reddish brown, the fruits wrinkle and take on the appearance of a date.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Prefers moist, well drained, acidic, but is adaptable
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (293)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (294)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (295)

Kentucky Coffee Tree

Gymnocladus dioica

Kentucky coffee tree is an Oklahoma native, growing to 60 feet tall. Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (296)It is very heat and drought tolerant and does well on high pH soils. Although it has few branches when young, it matures to a majestic and beautiful tree with large seed pods, which add winter interest. Espresso, a male selection, also is available.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (297)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (298)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (299)

Limber Pine

Pinus flexilis‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’

‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’ limber pine is an evergreen tree with a pyramidal habit that Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (300)typically grows 20 to 30 feet tall and about 10 to 15 feet wide. The specific epithet and common name is in reference to the flexible (limber) branchlets/twigs. ‘Vanderwolf’s Pyramid’ is noted for its closely spaced, twisted, silvery blue green needles. Limber pine is generally considered to be an adaptable, low-maintenance tree with few problems. Limber pine is native to North America and is considered resistant to pine wilt disease.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (301)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (302)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (303)

Persian Parrotia

Parrotia persica

Persian parrotia is a small tree reaching only 20 to 30 feet tall and can Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (304)spread almost as wide. Interesting deep-maroon flowers appear in late winter. Leaves have a reddish color when appearing in spring and change to a lustrous green in summer and can be a brilliant yellow or orange in fall. The bark exfoliates into patches of green, cream and gray, adding to the year-round interest of this tree. It is very heat and drought tolerant once established, but appreciates some protection from the afternoon sun.

Exposure: Part shade
Soil: Moist, well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (305)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (306)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (307)

Redbud

Cercis canadensisvar.texensis‘Oklahoma’

A cultivar of Oklahoma’s state tree, ‘Oklahoma’ was discovered in the Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (308)Arbuckle Mountains and was selected for the incredible magenta flowers that cover the tree in early spring. When the flowers fade, heart-shaped leaves emerge with a beautiful glossy sheen. ‘Oklahoma’ redbud can withstand full sun, and their small size (15 to 25 feet high) makes them perfect for use under utility lines. They tolerate a wide range of conditions, but do best in well-drained soils. ‘Oklahoma’ is one of the most beautiful native trees and is perfect for small yards needing a splash of color or grouped together where space allows.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 6

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (309)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (310)

Shantung Maple

Acer truncatum

Shantung maple is a drought-tolerant, small- to medium-sized tree Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (311)great for under power lines or in residential landscapes where there is not room for a large tree. It grows quickly, but typically only to 30 feet high. The leaves are star-shaped and typically emerge with an attractive purple tinge. This Asian native can have excellent fall color ranging from yellow to orange or red.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (312)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (313)

Shumard Oak

Quercus shumardii

Shumard oak is an Oklahoma native plant that can grow to be over Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (314)100 feet tall in the wild, but typically reaches 40 to 60 feet in the landscape. Shumard oak produces healthy green foliage even on alkaline soils, tolerates summer heat and drought and transplants easily.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well drained
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (315)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (316)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (317)

Silver Linden

Tilia tomentosa

Silver linden is a beautiful large shade tree that can grow 50 to 70 feet tall. It is Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (318)quite tolerant of high pH soils and urban conditions and is more heat tolerant than other lindens, making it a great street or shade tree for large yards in Oklahoma. Leaves of silver linden are dark green on the upper surface and silvery beneath, providing an interesting effect when the wind blows; leaves can have a nice yellow fall color. Tiny, fragrant white flowers attract bees in late June to July. Cultivars selected for brilliant fall color as well as outstanding performance are available.

Exposure: Full sun
Soil: Moist, well drained; tolerant of high pH soils and pollution
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (319)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (320)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (321)

Teddybear®Southern Magnolia

Magnolia grandiflora‘Southern Charm’Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (322)

Southern magnolias are the southern belles of the evergreen plant world. The species can reach 80 feet high and 50 feet wide and traditionally have been found on large estates and plantations of the south, however, these are too big for many urban landscapes. We have a solution for that though, enter ‘Southern Charm’ also known as Teddybear®. Teddybear is a dwarf, compact version of the species. It grows about 16 to 20 feet high and 10 to 12 feet wide in an upright pyramidal form, which makes it suitable for smaller gardens, screens, avenues, and specimens, as well as growing in large planters and containers. Leaves are deep green and glossy above with a dense reddish-brown fur on the underside, thus the Teddybear name. Flowers are large, up to 8 inches across, saucer-shaped, white, and fragrant appearing in early summer until early fall.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Moist, well-drained

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (323)Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (324)

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (325)

Winterberry Euonymus

Euonymus bungeanus

Winterberry euonymus is a large shrub to small tree with pendulous branches andOklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (326) light green foliage. Flowers are yellowish-green but not showy. Fruits are pinkish capsules, which split open at maturity revealing an orange aril (fleshy seed covering). Fall color can be yellow to orange and red. Bark is green with a rough texture and also is quite attractive. Winterberry grows 15 to 24 feet high and just about as wide. It is very adaptable and quite drought tolerant. It is mostly resistant to scale insects that are common on other euonymus species. Winterberry makes a great patio or specimen tree.

Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil: Tolerant of most soils
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 7

Oklahoma Proven: Plant Selections for Oklahoma - Oklahoma State University (327)

Topics:CropsDroughtFlowersLandscapingOrnamentalsShrubsTreesWater ConservationWater

Was this information helpful?

YESNO

Fact Sheet

Propagation of Ornamental Plants for Oklahoma

This circular discusses propagation techniques for different types plants.

CropsOrnamentalsShrubsTrees

Fact Sheet

Shade Tree Borers

Learn about borers and what causes them to attack shade trees.

Insects, Pests, and DiseasesTrees

Fact Sheet

Causa y Efectos de la Acidez del Suelo

The fact sheet explains why soils become acidic and the problems created by acid soils for crop production.

FlowersTrees

VIEW ALL

FAQs

What is a good ground cover for Oklahoma? ›

Our Picks for Best Ground Cover Plants to Grow in Oklahoma
  • Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) Lavender is a fragrant, low-growing perennial that thrives in dry conditions and poor soil. ...
  • Pachysandra. ...
  • Carex Testacea. ...
  • Vinca Minor. ...
  • Carex Grayi. ...
  • Lamiums. ...
  • Creeping Thyme (Thymus Serpyllum) ...
  • Carpet Bugle.

What plants grow well in shade in Oklahoma? ›

If you're looking for shade-loving shrubs, seek out holly, Japanese boxwood, acuba, leather leaf mahonia, Oregon grape mahonia or any of the varieties of abelias, she recommended. Be sure to use care when watering plants that grow in the shade.

What is the best non invasive ground cover? ›

Here are several lovely native, evergreen options to replace tiresome invasive spreaders.
  • Allegheny Spurge. Bottlebrush spikes of white flowers appear just before new spring leaves unfurl. ( ...
  • Fetterbush. ...
  • Canby's Mountain Lover. ...
  • Creeping Phlox. ...
  • Moss Phlox. ...
  • Other Native Evergreen Groundcovers.

What plant grows fast in the shade? ›

Thriving in partially shady locations, bugleweed (Ajuga reptans), lily turf (Liriope) and vinca (Vinca) are fast-growing groundcovers. Bugleweed hugs the ground, sending up short spikes of blue or white flowers in spring.

What is the fastest growing shrub for shade? ›

Forsythia is the fastest-growing shade shrub on this list, so if you're looking to fill the space fast, consider planting forsythia.

Do hydrangeas like sun or shade? ›

Hydrangeas like morning sun, but do not do well if they're in direct, hot afternoon sun. Partial shade in the later parts of the day is ideal for these beauties.

Are hydrangeas good in shade? ›

Hydrangeas grow best in full sun (more than 6 hours sun) to part sun (4-6 hours sun). With that being said, all hydrangeas can handle some shade, but the timing and type of shade are important to consider. They can be in full shade during the hottest part of the day, as long as they are getting some morning sun.

What is the fastest growing bush for privacy? ›

With growth rates from 3 to 5 feet per year the fastest growing privacy hedges are Thuja Green Giant, Leyland Cypress, Cryptomeria Radicans, and Wax Myrtle. Carolina Sapphire Cypress, Nellie Stevens Holly, Oakland Holly, and Wavy Leaf Ligustrum offer fast privacy with 2 to 3 feet of upward growth per year.

What is the fastest growing shrub bush? ›

Ligustrum x ibolium. This deciduous or semi-evergreen shrub is America's fasting-growing hedge, growing up to 3′ per year. The shrub's dense, dark, glossy green foliage makes it an excellent choice for hedges and privacy screens.

What ground cover will choke out weeds? ›

The Dragon's blood sedum or Schorbuser Blut is considered the most versatile and toughest ground cover that can choke out weeds. Similar to creeping jenny, this type of ground cover also has stems that easily root, so it's fast to proliferate. A dragon blood sedum is an all year-round charmer.

What is the most invasive ground cover? ›

Bamboo, which technically is a giant grass, is one of the world's most invasive plants. Once established, it is literally next to impossible to control. The sprouts that shoot up from the ground each spring can grow 12 inches a day!

What do farmers use for ground cover? ›

Alfalfa (Medicago sativa)

Alfalfa is known for its deep, strong tap root that can reduce soil compaction over years of use as a cover crop. It can also protect sandy soil from erosion and improve the soil structure, particularly its permeability and infiltration.

What is the fastest-growing ground cover plant? ›

Creeping Jenny is one of the fastest-growing ground cover plants as long as it is planted in the right conditions. It will quickly spread up to two feet. But, it needs a lot of water to thrive. Therefore it doesn't do well in drought-prone areas.

What plants look best in large pots? ›

Best plants for pots all year-round
  • Skimmia japonica.
  • Hosta.
  • Fountain grass (Pennisetum setaceum)
  • Buddleia 'Buzz'
  • Hebe.
  • Agapanthus.
  • Cornus.
  • Heuchera.
25 Jan 2022

Which plant that grows most rapidly? ›

The tiny aquatic plant Wolffia, also known as duckweed, is the fastest-growing plant known.

What plants do well in both sun and shade? ›

  • Alyssum (Snow Princess, Sweet Alyssum) Annual, Heat tolerant, full sun to partial shade, constant bloom. ...
  • Angelonia (Summer Snapdragon) ...
  • Aspidistra (Cast Iron Plant) ...
  • Begonia. ...
  • Big Blue Liriope. ...
  • Black-eyed Susan. ...
  • Caladiums. ...
  • Coleus.

What is the easiest flowering bush to grow? ›

Potentilla are likely the very easiest flowering shrub to grow, they literally thrive on neglect. Because they have been so widely planted they seem to be considered “too common”. There are many newer varieties available, but if you want the easiest to grow, stick with the highly reliable old fashioned originals.

Is there a perennial that blooms all summer? ›

Coneflower 'White Swan' and 'Magnus' (Echinacea purpurea, zones 3 to 9). Coneflowers are the cornerstone of a summer perennial garden, blooming for months, even in dry, hot conditions, and providing food for butterflies, bees, and other pollinators.

What is the best low maintenance shrub? ›

Some of the favorite low-maintenance shrubs include Boxwood, Dwarf Gardenia, Rosemary, and Rhododendron. You can add in a variety of sizes to add some extra curb appeal as well as flowering, evergreen, and deciduous shrubs for the front of your house.

What grows fast and tall for privacy? ›

What are the fastest-growing trees for privacy? Hybrid poplar tops the list. It can grow upwards of five feet per year. The Leyland cypress, green giant arborvitae, and silver maple are all close seconds because they add about two feet to their height each year.

Is Miracle Grow good for hydrangeas? ›

Feeding Hydrangeas

A slow-release plant food works well. For best results, try Miracle-Gro® Shake 'n Feed® Flowering Trees & Shrubs Plant Food, which feeds for up to 3 months.

Should I cut off Brown hydrangea blooms? ›

Are the blooms on your hydrangea shrubs fading or turning brown? No need to worry – this is simply a sign that it's time to remove the flowers, a process called deadheading. When you deadhead hydrangeas, you aren't harming the plants at all.

What fertilizer is best for hydrangeas? ›

Typically hydrangeas thrive when fed an all-purpose, balanced fertilizer like a 10-10-10 N-P-K or 12-4-8 N-P-K. To increase the size and quantity of hydrangea blooms, consider a fertilizer with more phosphorus.

Where should you not plant hydrangeas? ›

No hydrangea will do well in HEAVY shade, such as under a shade tree. The blooms will be sparse and will not develop fully. If your landscape is mostly sunny (and hot), you may wish to grow the PeeGee (paniculata) hydrangea, which thrives in all day sun as long as it receives adequate moisture.

What side of the house do you plant hydrangeas? ›

Often the east side of a house is the best spot to plant hydrangeas, this is particularly the case in the northern hemisphere. This is because it usually gets morning sun, and then offers some shade from the strong afternoon sun. This is ideal for hydrangeas.

What is the cheapest privacy tree to plant? ›

Try Some Inexpensive Evergreens

The Leyland cypress (× Cuprocyparis leylandii) is another fast-growing, inexpensive option that thrives in USDA zones 6 through 10. It is slightly smaller than Thuja 'Green Giant' and reaches up to 50 feet at full maturity with a growth rate of up to 3 feet per year.

What is the cheapest hedge to grow? ›

Laurel is the quickest growing evergreen hedging plant that isn't a conifer, so if you don't want a conifer hedge, Laurel is the quickest and cheapest way of creating an evergreen hedge.

What plant makes the best privacy fence? ›

Arborvitae are the most commonly used privacy plants. They grow tall and form a solid wall when planted close together. They are one of the best tall plants for privacy. They are some of the hardiest plants both in and outside of cold weather.

What plant can survive the harshest conditions? ›

Extreme plant survivors
  • From jungles to deserts, prairies to mountains, plants have adapted to some of the most extreme environments on the planet. ...
  • Aloes. ...
  • Baobab trees. ...
  • Hyancinth (Scilla madeirensis) ...
  • St Helena ebony (Trochetiopsis ebenus) ...
  • Argan trees (Sideroxylon spinosum) ...
  • Morrisby's gum (Eucalyptus morrisbyi)
29 May 2020

What is the longest lasting flowering shrub? ›

Butterfly bush have one of the longest bloom times of all garden plants: they seem to never be without flowers from early summer through autumn. This makes them perhaps better called “continuous bloomers” over rebloomers, since they don't really take a break like other plants on this list do.

What is the fastest growing evergreen for privacy? ›

1. Thuja x 'Green Giant' – Hybrid Arborvitae. Green Giant might be the best evergreen for privacy. It has an extremely fast growth rate, putting on 3-4' per year.

What to put on shrubs to make them grow faster? ›

Inorganic fertilizers provide immediate nutrients to plants and help them grow faster. Organic fertilizers take longer to release in the soil, but they create a healthier soil over time. If your goal is to take an existing plant and make it grow faster, then use inorganic fertilizer.

What is the fastest spreading ground cover? ›

Creeping Jenny

Creeping Jenny is one of the fastest-growing ground cover plants as long as it is planted in the right conditions. It will quickly spread up to two feet. But, it needs a lot of water to thrive. Therefore it doesn't do well in drought-prone areas.

What ground cover can take a lot of water? ›

Scarletta fetterbush (Leucothoe fontanesiana 'Zeblid') is a shade-loving evergreen ground cover that you can grow in wet and soggy areas. New leaves emerge with a scarlet-purple color, which changes to deep green as it matures.

What is the easiest ground cover? ›

In addition to its fragrant spring blooms, lily-of-the-valley is one of the easiest groundcovers to grow. It's perfect in a shady spot under a big tree in your backyard because it tolerates dry conditions well.

What soaks up water in yard? ›

Rain gardens absorb excess runoff in yards. Designed to drain within 48 hours to prevent mosquitoes from breeding, a rain garden absorbs water from roofs, driveways, sidewalks and other impermeable surfaces before it can flood your yard. Water soaks away in the amended soil, or plants take it up in their roots.

What grows well in soil with poor drainage? ›

List of the Best Plants for Clay Soil With Poor Drainage [Updated] 1.4 4) Roses (Rosa spp.) 1.5 5) Lungwort (Pulmonaria spp.) 1.7 7) Plantain lilies (Hosta spp.)

What plants keep weeds away? ›

Plants like hosta and coral bells can be tucked into small areas around trees and shrubs to control weeds.
...
In full sun the following plants are excellent choices for beautiful and efficient groundcover:
  • Stonecrop.
  • Hens and chicks.
  • Catmint.
  • Yarrow.
  • Calamintha.
  • Artemisia.
  • Mint.
  • Coreopsis.
27 Jul 2022

What is the best time to plant ground cover? ›

Where winters are cold, plant in spring; this will give the groundcover an entire season to become established before it must face the rigors of winter. In areas with hot, dry summers and mild winters, plant in fall; the winter rains will help get the plants off to a good start.

Videos

1. Oklahoma Proven: Coleus
(OklahomaGardening)
2. OKP 20th Anniversary
(OklahomaGardening)
3. Oklahoma Gardening October 8, 2022
(OklahomaGardening)
4. Oklahoma Proven 2011
(OklahomaGardening)
5. Oklahoma Proven Plants That Look Great in Winter
(OklahomaGardening)
6. Oklahoma Proven Plants for 2014
(OklahomaGardening)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Rev. Leonie Wyman

Last Updated: 02/21/2023

Views: 6241

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (59 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Rev. Leonie Wyman

Birthday: 1993-07-01

Address: Suite 763 6272 Lang Bypass, New Xochitlport, VT 72704-3308

Phone: +22014484519944

Job: Banking Officer

Hobby: Sailing, Gaming, Basketball, Calligraphy, Mycology, Astronomy, Juggling

Introduction: My name is Rev. Leonie Wyman, I am a colorful, tasty, splendid, fair, witty, gorgeous, splendid person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.