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Flower Power: The Gardens at UGA

by Helen Fosgate


Tucked away, behind the College of Pharmacy on South Campus, the Gardens at UGA stretch out like a richly textured quilt. Here, each year, researchers test the mettle of more than 900 cultivars, evaluating how well each stands up to the heat, humidity and searing sun of a Deep South summer.

“This is a true research garden, where data for all plants are recorded biweekly,” said Allan Armitage, horticulture professor and driving force behind the Gardens since they were established in 1983. “It’s also a pleasant place to spend a little time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. And where is it written that research can’t be beautiful?”

The garden trials include annuals and perennials from mainstream and independent breeders around the world. “Company reps come see for themselves how their plants are doing,” said Meg Green, who oversees the Gardens, the students and the volunteers, who help maintain this sprawling enterprise. “The reps quote us—and use our data in advertising their plants.”

For more information, visit the garden—in person—or on the web, where you’ll also find evaluation data, photos—and at summer’s end—the big winners:



Research Communications, Office of the VP for Research, UGA
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