Aug 28, 2023
Farwest Show judges select favorites for Retailers’ Choice Awards

Garden retailers roamed the trade show floor as part of the Retailers’ Choice Awards and chose 15 different products that caught their eyes as judges at the 2023 Farwest Show.

The awards chosen by the judges were presented Thursday, Aug. 24 at the show by Danny Summers, managing director of The Garden Center Group. Both live goods and hard goods were eligible.

“Judges based their decisions on whether or not they were interested in carrying the products,” Summers said. “Some of the products were also honored at other trade events, echoing the sentiments of other retailers about the potential popularity of the products with consumers.”

The awards winners were as follows:

Hydrangea ‘Eclipse’

Bailey Nurseries

Hydrangea mac. Eclipse

Foliage that’s dark purple, almost black, coloration, it is a standout. Eclipse holds that dark color all season, even after being cut back or when grown in warm climates where other hydrangeas start to go green.

Centarea ‘Silver Swirl’

Darwin Perennials/Ball Seed

Darwin Centarea Silver Swirl

Drought tolerant, rabbit resistant, colorful/attractive Foliage, low maintenance. Zones 6 to 9.

Petunia ‘Frosted Sapphire Bliss’

Ball Seed

Ball-Darwin Petunia Frosted Sapphire Bliss

Beautiful blue and white picotee pattern makes this double petunia a great component for hanging baskets, containers and mixes.

Echinacea ‘Double Scoop Watermelon’ 

Ball Seed

Ball Seed Echinacea Double Scoop Watermelon

Double flower form is eye-catching. Features clean leaves and brilliantly colored blooms.

Eastern Redbud ‘Alley Cat’

Bountiful Farms

Cercis c. Alley Cat

This unique redbud has green foliage splashed with white that gives it a one-of-a-kind touch from the rest. Its dark pink pea-shaped flowers emerge in April just before the leaves begin to show with shades of copper pink and soft green. The white splashes on the green leaves emerge as the leaves mature that then turn a reddish, bronze color in the fall to offer stunning autumn color.

‘Sweet Fern’

Briggs Nursery

Sweetfern - Comptonia peregrina

‘Sweet Fern’ has glossy green leaves that are aromatic when abraded. Native to the NE united States, Comptonia is very adaptive, but prefers full to partial sun in well drained conditions. Drought and wildlife tolerant once established.

Alocasia ‘Frydek’

Cascade Tropicals

Alocasia Frydek

The mature, broad, velvety black leaves have striking white veins making this easy-care plant a real beauty. The juvenile leaves appear as bright lime-green and the pale leaf stems have a purplish jagged banding which adds even more intrigue to this eye-catching species.

BP4LI Battery Operated Backpack Sprayer


Dramm BP4LI Battery Powered Backpack Sprayer

Operating at a maximum of 150 psi, the BP-4Li atomizes spray solutions for excellent coverage. Fully variable pressure allows the BP-4Li to run from 10-15psi with the turn of a knob. The battery operated pump ensures even flow rates, perfect for even application of plant growth regulators, insecticides, fungicides an other greenhouse chemicals. The BP-4Li runs for 45 minutes on a charge with a swappable battery. The 4 gallon capacity is just the right size. Perfect for spot treatments or concentrated applications, but small enough to still be comfortable.

Spruce ‘Moonstone’

Iseli Nursery

Moonstone Spruce

This well-mannered little gem has bright blue foliage and maintains a compact, rounded form from youth to maturity. The perfect size and shape for suburban gardens. Hardy to zone 2.

Daphne ‘Banana Split’


Daphne Banana Split

An exceptional new selection with variegated foliage, each leaf with a wide yellow edge. Rose-pink buds open to white, sweetly fragrant flowers.

Coneflower ‘Guatemala Gold’


Echinacea Guatemala Gold

A very short and compact variety with golden yellow blooms. The low foliage creates a dense mound.

Boxwood ‘Liberty Belle’

NewGen Boxwood

NewGen-Liberty Belle Boxwood

Low, spreading, billowing form, graced by glossy, deep green foliage. Best performance in shade to part sun. Excellent as a specimen or container plant – can also prune or shear for low hedges. Demonstrated superior boxwood blight resistance in our trials, as well as good boxwood leaf miner resistance. Deer resistant as well.

Wall Mounted Trellis


Wall mounted trellises_Treleaf

Monstrella wall mounts. Available as a set of three or a set of five, depending on the size.

Hydrangea ‘Dragon Baby’ 

Van Belle

Hydrangea Dragon Baby2

This improved Hydrangea delivers extraordinary flower power in a petite form for modern outdoor spaces.

Cotinus ‘Old Fashioned’

Youngblood Nursery

Cotinus Old Fashion

Foliage is blue-gray at maturity, gray-purple when young. Eye-catching smoke-like tresses in midsummer. Bright yellow-green flowers in spring.