“IT’S SO CUTE, WOW, WOW, WOW!” Sakata’s Profusion Zinnia Red Yellow Bicolor Announced 2021 AAS Gold Medalist & Fleuroselect Winner
A new variety of zinnia developed by Sakata Seed Corporation, Profusion Red Yellow Bicolor Zinnia, has been awarded Gold Medals at two of the world’s top flower competitions: All-America Selections (AAS) in the US and Fleuroselect (FS) in Europe. This is the first Gold Medal awarded by AAS in 17 years, and this is the first time in the industry in 17 years that a single variety has been a gold medalist at both AAS and FS.
Profusion Red Yellow Bicolor Zinnia is notable for its distinct red and yellow coloration—the first time this coloration has been achieved in an interspecific zinnia hybrid. Conventional varieties have included bicolored flowers, but such varieties have not had consistent coloration, instead becoming monochromatic or having blurred color depending on the cultivation climate and sunlight. Profusion Red Yellow Bicolor Zinnia produces distinctly bicolored flowers that last longer under diverse conditions, and that consistency has earned it high praise from AAS, which grew and evaluated the flowers in various climate zones throughout the US. The variety also received high acclaim at both flower competitions not only for the features of the Profusion series, including compactness of plant habit, good flowering count, disease resistance, and continuous flowering habit, but also for the unique characteristic of gradual color changes from bicolored to shades of apricot, pink, and rose as the flowers age.
Described by multiple AAS judges as, ‘So Cute, Wow, Wow, Wow!,’ this variety stole the show to get the gold; an honor that hasn’t been achieved since 2004 and is described by the AAS organization as an award reserved for ‘true breeding breakthroughs.’
According to a press release from AAS, ‘This gorgeous zinnia starts the season with a bold vibrant red center ring surrounded by golden-yellow outer petals. As the season progresses, the aging flowers morph into soft, beautiful shades of apricot, salmon, and dusty rose bringing a plethora of color to the garden, all from one variety! Trial garden visitors clamored over this floriferous and compact plant during the summer trials noting how well the plant continued to bloom new flowers over old so there was never a decline in the beauty presented by Profusion Red Yellow Bicolor.’
The Profusion zinnia line was first introduced to the United States market in 1999. Since, this extraordinary series has developed seven AAS winning colors between the Profusion and Profusion Double series. In fact, this series is so phenomenal, it became the first flower to be grown in space! In mid-January 2016, Scott Kelly, Expedition Commander on the International Space Station, tweeted a photo of a blooming zinnia at the International Space Station 250 miles above earth with the hashtag, #SpaceFlower.
‘This is a truly exciting market introduction from the Sakata team. The Profusion zinnia line has provided decades of excellent performance for the industry and home gardeners alike, and the new Red Yellow Bicolor is no exception,’ states Joe Cimino. ‘The AAS Gold Medal is by no means awarded annually but, instead, given only when a variety is nonpareil, which is what we have here. This introduction is a culmination of the hard work and passion of many on the Sakata team and we’re proud to continue our legacy of quality and innovation with Profusion Red Yellow Bicolor zinnia.’