In north Texas we have many environmental challenges that make selecting the “right” plants crucial to successful gardening. Although most catalogs and books give good descriptions about a plant’s requirements, many of these descriptions are based on growing experience in northern states. Here in Dallas, we have weather conditions that force us to choose plants that have extra fortitude. Our winters can be mild, but we may experience sudden sharp drops in temperature; plants must tolerate periods of either too much rain, or no rain at all; and no one can forget about our extreme temperature conditions in the summer. We ask a lot of our ornamental plants!
The Trial Gardens at the Dallas Arboretum were created for the purpose of expanding our research efforts and providing information to the public. The main focus of the plant testing program is to grow and evaluate many different plants in the drastic climate of the Metroplex and North Central Texas, and develop new plant selections. Information generated from these trials is provided to commercial plant producers, retailers, and home gardeners.