‘Just the plant we’ve been crying for’

Loropetalum chinense 'Peack' Purple Pixie Dwarf Weeping Loropetalum - photo: Southern Living Plant Collection

Loropetalum chinense ‘Peack’ Purple Pixie Dwarf Weeping Loropetalum – photo: Southern Living Plant Collection

In the US Purple Pixie Dwarf Weeping Loropetalum (Loropetalum chinense ‘Peack’) is one of the ‘spotlight’ plants in Southern Living Plant Collection which will be featured during the month of June. The Southern Living Plant Collection – introduced in 2008 – is a partnership between Plant Development Services Inc. (PDSI) and Southern Living magazine, with the goal to provide innovative new plants selected for their ability to solve specific landscape challenges.
Purple Pixie is one of the PDSI-introductions. Actually, in the Plant Patent information of Loropetalum chinense ‘Peack’ James Bryan Berry is named as the ‘inventor’. The patent was granted in 2008.
Great choice for a ground cover
PDSI describes Purple Pixie that with its dwarf size and weeping habit is just ‘the plant we’ve been crying for’. It grows only 1 to 2 feet tall by 4 to 5 feet wide. It’s therefore considered as a great choice for a ground cover. “But it can also add vibrant color to hanging baskets, window boxes, and other containers. Showy pink flowers combined with rich purple foliage will move you to tears.”
Dwarf size and weeping habit make it unique
The Extension Service of the University of Florida (US) notes that Loropetalum, also known as Chinese Fringe Bush, is often seen in landscapes as a large shrub. “Purple Pixie is a relatively new cultivar having a dwarf size and weeping habit which makes it unique. This shrub has showy pink flowers that resemble ribbons or fringe in spring, but the deep burgundy evergreen foliage gives it year-round interest.”
‘Better root system and more floriferous’
Loropetalum chinense ‘Ruby Runner’ - photo: Plantipp

Loropetalum chinense ‘Ruby Runner’ – photo: Plantipp

In Europe Loropetalum chinense ‘Ruby Runner’ is conquering the market. It will be one of the novelties at the French trade fair Salon du Végétal in Nantes, France (June 20-22). Last year it was awarded at the Dutch trade fair GrootGroenPlus with a Silver Medal. The jury of the Royal Boskoop Horticultural Society said about ‘Ruby Runner’: “Well-shaped plants and well-presented. Very deep foliage colours, combined with good warm flower colours.” It was submitted to the novelties contest of this trade fair by nursery Van Son en Koot BV and royalty management agency Plantipp. The agency describes it as a shrub that thrives well in full sun and is quite hardy. Its reaches a height of around 10 cm and width of about 50 cm providing lovely ground cover but it is also perfect for using in hanging baskets. According to Peter van Rijssen from Plantipp ‘Ruby Runner’ derives from the same PDSI breeding program. “However, this selection has a better root system and is more floriferous.”
See also the Loropetalum chinense ‘Peack’ video from Australian nursery Ozbreed on the WOODY PLANTS page of newPlantsandFlowers.