Sunday, September 25, 2011

Pictures: Petunia 'Phantom'

I took these photos in April, and by now everybody's already blogged about how they do or don't like them, and quite a few people don't approve of Petunias under any circumstances, so nobody's going to care about this post, but it's late on Saturday night and I don't have a post yet and this was the best I could do, so.


I think I have to come down on the side of not liking them. One of the churches in town planted some in a small bed, and from a distance, they don't read well. The black basically disappears, and all you're left with are five narrow slashes of pale yellow, which to my eye looks a lot like five chlorotic, withered leaves. (And sometimes the actual leaves are chlorotic and/or withered, which doesn't help.)


Not saying I couldn't maybe like them in a different context -- a yellow container? against a red wall? -- but so far I'm not impressed. The only thing I'd like less in a Petunia would be solid black, and I hear they have a pronounced tendency to revert to solid black.


10 comments:

Tom said...

We planted these in quite a few containers at work. They've performed extremely well in all of them. They look especially nice when planted with pinks and purples

College Gardener said...

Mmm, I do think they only look cool up close... Maybe a lot of people felt the same way because I did not end up seeing them much used in actual landscaping.

Jeane said...

I'm fond of petunias, but have to say I don't like this color combination at all.

Paul said...

Love 'em. I have them hanging on my porch.

Ivynettle said...

They're OK when you can see them close up (which is what I always told my customers), but from a distance, I don't think they'd look good.

Megan said...

Normally I'm a Petunia hater, but we planted this guy earlier this spring. It's looking alright these days: http://www.flickr.com/photos/faroutflora/6181639950/in/photostream
It does kind of get lost, but fulfills my need to deadhead something. Seemed to put up with barely any water all summer, too. We're giving Petunia exerta a shot, too.

Pat said...

Is it fragrant? Looks very weird, not sure until I see it in the flesh.

~Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

I think they would be a nice surprise in a container you walk by like near a door but I wouldn't want them in a large bed.

Jordan in Oregon said...

I grew Phantom this year. Thoughts:
Nice to have a petunia with scent (Where's yours, Waves?).
Semi-compact, but pinching back really helped.
Cool weather / part-shade* is where they shine: spring and fall. The black is blackest and the yellow yellowest (I did not know that was a word ... hmm). Come summer, all that hot weather seems to drive the black from the blossoms and they get almost all yellow with a few streaks of purple. I've noticed this in other star petunias, though.
If you like petunias, this is good. It combos well with other dark foliage (the big combo seems to be Ipomoea 'Blackie', which also, for me, lost it's darkness in the full sun. Part sun* did fine.
And you can't forget it's siblings, Black Velvet, being solid, and Pinstripe, having 5 thin white lines radiating from the center.
I'll grow it again. If you like Petunias, it's a great one. If you don't, you probably won't like this one either.

Kingdom said...

Hi. I love petunias especially their colors...but they don't love me back, so I've given up on them. hehe. The black and yellow colors of the petunias in your photos is a welcoming sign for the coming Halloween! :)