I purchased Distant Drums from Chamblee Spring 2011. It was not vigorous at all, and really didn't grow or bloom. After it hit 18 in tall, it began to grow backwards and eventually died. We had extreme prolonged heat (105+) and drought in the Houston area during 2011 for several months running, and I believe this helped speed the decline. I'm not convinced that Distant Drums would have survived otherwise though as several baby plants purchased at the same time thrived in a way that DD never did. I should add that DD was able to have some shade during the most brutal heat. I coddled this plant to no avail. I have no plans to replace it at this time.
This is the first year I've grown this plant. I wanted it specifically as it is one of Griffith Buck's introduction and I know it will be winter hardy in my Zone 5A area of upstate NY. We watched in awe as each fat bud opened and exhibited a slightly frilled quartered bloom but that was only the beginning. As each day passed the color changed from a pale pink to a mauve/tan tinged bloom. I brought 4 lovely buds into the house as colder weather began and was so impressed by the outstanding fragrance which I hadn't noticed when the plant was blooming outside. I think this plant would tolerate partial shade and again, the coloration of the blooms would be completely different from what is exhibited by my plant that receives sunlight for most of the day and especially in the afternoon. It won't win any Queens but it is winner in my garden.