Few gardeners would dispute the fact that garden Phlox is a worthy addition to the summer landscape, and nectar-seeking butterflies emphatically agree. But which varieties among the many offered at nurseries and catalogs do the best job of both adding beauty and supporting beneficial insects?
George Coombs manages the trial gardens at Mt. Cuba Center Native Plant Garden and Research Facility in Delaware. In past conversations, George has helped me make our way through the daunting selections of Heuchera, Monarda, and Baptisia. Now George and the trial garden team have spent three years evaluating 94 different sun-loving selections of Phlox for eye and butterfly appeal and mildew resistance, plus 43 shade-garden choices too.