Iberville Living: new blossoms

Nichole Lefebvre
Guest Contributor
Plaquemine Post South

I don't know about you, but I can't wait for the eye-popping colors, sweet smells of spring, and digging in the dirt with anticipation of the new blossoms. There are so many of us that have that "plant addiction."

I felt like I needed to write about our wonderful Iberville Parish, lush, flowering and blooming plants and trees.

I sought the help of Mrs. Vickey Vicknair, a Master Gardener of Plaquemine, La. If you ever pass in front of her home, the yard pops with shades of elegant pinks.

Mrs. Vicknair is filled with knowledge of gardening. I asked her how she really started gardening and the answer was quite simple. She built her home and finished her interior but needed to complete the outdoors.

She took classes through Westside Master Gardeners and earned her Master Gardener title. She showed me volumes of information about gardening that she had acquired and tips she picked up along the way.  

Mrs. Vicknair pointed out that it was quiet time when gardening, time with God, and thinking time. I think we can all relate to something that we love that gives us our own time. And with that time, we are also growing something that we can actually see the fruits of our labor.

She explained that every time she plants something new and it is fabulous, she feels like "a winner!" I am no stranger to Mrs. Vicknair's gardens. I love all of the different ferns, rare blooming plants, night blooming plants, variegated plants, and hardy foliage.   

She is a member of a group of Master Gardeners who want to share their knowledge with everyone.  She shared information with me that will help everyone in the garden.

One of the most important tips she gave me was to make sure you plant the right plants in the right place. If you have a spot that has mostly sun, plant flowers that can take full sun. If you have a shady place, plant flowers for shade. That is critical.

Do not buy plants without tags. They explain where to plant, what they are, their growth, and how to care for them.  

LSU has done extensive research on plants grown here in zone 8, that are excellent for our climate and soil. They are called Louisiana Super Plants. There are a spectrum of plants, greens, and trees. Some of the plants are Amazon Dianthus, Camelot Foxglove, Shishi Gashira Camellia, Butterfly Pentas, 'Shoal Creek' Vitex, Southern Sugar Maple, 'Penny Mac' Hydrangea, Sorbet Viola, 'Conversation Piece' Azalea, and Evergreen Sweetbay Magnolia.

But stop! She actually showed me a petunia that is so hardy and so lush, I was completely impressed! It's called Supertunia Vista Bubblegum. It's a gardener’s dream. This is a great blooming plant for beginner gardeners.  

If you would like to find out more about the Super Plants, please go to the website LSUAgCenter.com/SuperPlants. Can't wait to see all of the fabulous yards and gardens billowing with blooms this spring! Happy Planting! God Bless.