Amazon – And Other Winners

Q: We just moved here after eight years Germany and are getting used to all the wonderful plants in the South. Recently I received a plant called “Amazon” and was told it was a Georgia Gold Medal winner. It is growing in the house right now, but I have not been able to find any information on it.

A: Your question gives me an opportunity to promote the entire list of Georgia Gold Medal winners since 1994. The Gold Medal program is sponsored by the University of Georgia and members of the state’s green industry. Their goal is to promote superior plants that grow well in our demanding weather. According to Jim Midcap, Extension horticulture specialist, the winners have been:

2000
Sun Coleus ( ‘Amazon’, ‘Solar Flare’, ‘Red Ruffles’, ‘Purple Ducksfoot’)
‘David’ & ‘Robert Poore’ Phlox
‘Alice’ Oakleaf Hydrangea
‘Little Gem’ Southern Magnolia

1999
‘Nova’ Pentas
Lenten Rose
Mohawk Viburnum
American Yellowwood

1998
‘Athens Gem’ Plectranthus
Japanese Aster
Bottlebrush Buckeye
Trident Maple

1997
Blue Fan Flower
Three-Lobed Coneflower
Pink Chinese Loropetalum
‘Yoshino’ Cryptomeria

1996
‘Purple Wave’ Petunia
Wild Indigo
‘Hummingbird’ Clethra
‘Lipan’ Crapemyrtle
‘Sioux’ Crapemyrtle
‘Tonto’ Crapemyrtle
‘Yuma’ Crapemyrtle

1995
‘New Gold’ Lantana
Blue Anise Sage
‘Annabelle’ Hydrangea
Athena(tm) Elm

1994
‘Bath’s Pink’ Dianthus
‘Homestead Purple’ Verbena
‘Mount Airy’ Fothergilla
Japanese Plum Yew

As you can see, you received an ‘Amazon’ coleus at the botanical garden. It is a summer annual that thrives in full sunshine. Wait until mid-April to plant it outside. In the meantime, try rooting some cuttings from your plant in tumblers of water. You’ll have even more coleus to enjoy this summer!