Monthly Archives: August 2015

Echeveria derenbergii – magic rose in stone garden


Echeveria can be evergreen succulent perennials or subshrubs with rosettes of colourful, fleshy leaves and racemes or panicles of urn-shaped flowers

E. derenbergii is an evergreen succulent with rosettes of obovate, whitish-green leaves and one-sided racemes of small cup-shaped red and yellow flowers opening from late winter to summer

Common Name: painted lady
Family: Crassulaceae
Color flower: Red and Yellow in Spring, Summer and Winter
Hardiness: H2 (tender – cool or frost-free greenhouse)
Color foliage: Green and White in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter
Height: Up to 10 cm
Habit: Bushy
Habit: May be attacked by mealybugs, vine weevil and aphids
Pruning: No pruning required
Spreadid: North-facing
Time to ultimate height: 2-5 years
Exposure: Grow under glass in a standard cactus compost, in full light. Provide low humidity. Water freely when in growth and keep just moist at other times. Apply a dilute low nitrogen fertilizer fortnightly during late spring and summer. Keep almost dry in the winter. Stand plants outside during the summer months
Garden characteristics: Patio/Container Plants

Argyranthemum ‘Levada Cream’


Argyranthemum are evergreen woody-based perennials or sub-shrubs, with simple or pinnately dissected leaves and white, yellow or pink, daisy-like flower-heads from late spring to autumn

‘Levada Cream’ is a rather spreading subshrub to 60cm tall, with divided and sharply toothed green leaves and single daisies with darker-centred light yellow flowers fading to cream

Common Name: marguerite ‘Levada Cream’
Family: Asteraceae
Color flower: Cream and Yellow in Autumn, Spring and Summer
Hardiness: H2 (tender – cool or frost-free greenhouse)
Color foliage: Green in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter
Height: 0.5-1 metres
Habit: Bushy
Habit: Leaf miners may be a problem
Pruning: Deadhead regularly, pruning group 10
Spreadid: West-facing
Time to ultimate height: 1-2 years
Exposure: Grow in moderately fertile, well-drained soil in full sun. Deadhead regularly to prolong flowering and pinch growing tips to keep compact. Mulching may protect rootstock from frost, and helps to conserve water. Water in prolonged dry spells
Garden characteristics: City/Courtyard Gardens, Coastal, Flower borders and beds, Patio/Container Plants, Mediterranean Climate Plants or Wall-side Borders

Mammillaria carmenae


Mammillaria are spiny cacti with spherical or columnar stems, often in clusters, with many prominent tubercles, and funnel-shaped flowers usually in a ring near the apex of the stem

M. carmenae is a clustering cactus with globose stems to 8cm in height, the areoles with about 100 cream radial spines; white or pink-tinged flowers 1cm in length are borne towards the apex of each stem in spring and summer

Common Name: Isla Carmen pincushion cactus
Family: Cactaceae
Color flower: Pink and White in Spring and Summer
Hardiness: H2 (tender – cool or frost-free greenhouse)
Height: Up to 10 cm
Habit: Clump-forming
Habit: May be attacked by mealybugs
Pruning: No pruning required
Spreadid: South-facing
Time to ultimate height: 5-10 years
Exposure: Grow under glass in a standard cactus compost, in bright, filtered light, with low humidity. When in growth water moderately and feed every two or three weeks with a balanced liquid feed. Keep almost dry in the winter
Garden characteristics: Patio/Container Plants

Muscari azureu


Muscari are bulbous perennials with linear or strap-shaped leaves and small bell-shaped, tubular or urn-shaped flowers borne in a dense raceme on an erect leafless stem

M. azureum is a compact bulbous perennial to 10cm in height, with narrow, channelled leaves. Small, bell-shaped pale blue flowers, each segment having a darker central stripe, are borne in dense racemes

Common Name: azure grape hyacinth
Family: Asparagaceae
Color flower: Pale Blue and Dark Blue in Spring
Hardiness: H5 (hardy – cold winter)
Color foliage: Green in Spring and Summer
Height: Up to 10 cm
Habit: Tufted
Habit: Generally pest free
Pruning: No pruning required
Spreadid: South-facing
Time to ultimate height: 2-5 years
Exposure: Plant 10cm deep in autumn in any moderately fertile, well-drained soil. Lift and divide (when dormant in summer) congested clumps to maintain vigour. May be invasive
Garden characteristics: City/Courtyard Gardens, Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower borders and beds, Garden Edging, Gravel Garden, Ground Cover, Low Maintenance, Patio/Container Plants, Rock Garden, Underplanting of Roses and Shrubs or Wildflower meadow

Fittonia albivenis Argyroneura Group


Fittonia are evergreen perennials with rooting stems forming mats of opposite, attractively coloured or veined leaves, and insignificant white flowers seldom seen in cultivation

Argyroneura Group is a creeping evergreen perennial with rooting stems and broadly elliptic, rich green leaves with an attractive tracery of silvery veins. Flowers insignificant, white

Common Name: nerve plant
Family: Acanthaceae
Color flower: White in Summer
Hardiness: H1a (heated greenhouse – tropical)
Color foliage: Green and Grey/Silver in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter
Height: 0.1-0.5 metres
Habit: Clump-forming
Habit: Generally pest free
Pruning: No pruning required
Spreadid: North-facing
Time to ultimate height: 2-5 years
Exposure: Under glass grow in loam-based potting compost in indirect light. When in growth water moderately, keeping just moist and apply a balanced liquid fertiliser monthly. Keep barely moist in winter
Garden characteristics: Patio/Container Plants

Dianthus ‘Evening Star’ – bright pink flower for your garden


Dianthus can be annuals, evergreen perennials or subshrubs with narrow, often greyish leaves and showy flowers that are frequently fragrant

Pinks are hardy, evergreen perennials which make compact mounds or mats of usually greyish leaves, with up to six, usually fragrant, single or double, medium-sized flowers per stem in early and mid-summer

‘Evening Star’ is a very compact plant with grey-green foliage and short stems bearing fragrant, semi-double, bright rosy pink flowers with a bold, dark red centre in early summer

Common Name: pink ‘Evening Star’
Family: Caryophyllaceae
Color flower: Pink and Dark Red in Summer
Hardiness: H6 (hardy – very cold winter)
Color foliage: Green and Grey/Silver in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter
Height: Up to 10 cm
Habit: Bushy
Habit: Slugs and aphids may be a problem
Pruning: Deadhead regularly to prolong flowering
Spreadid: South-facing
Time to ultimate height: 2-5 years
Exposure: Grow in a well-drained, neutral to alkaline soil in full sun. Prefers a soil enriched with well-rotted manure or garden compost and an application of a balanced fertiliser in spring
Garden characteristics: Banks and Slopes, City/Courtyard Gardens, Coastal, Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower borders and beds, Ground Cover, Gravel Garden, Rock Garden or Patio/Container Plants

Erica × williamsii ‘P.D. Williams’

Erica can be prostrate or erect, evergreen shrubs with fine, needle-like leaves in whorls, and racemes or panicles of small, bell-shaped or tubular flowers’P.D. Williams’ is a compact dwarf shrub to 30cm, with yellow new growth, later green, and terminal umbels of rose-pink flowers
Common Name: heath ‘P.D. Williams’
Family: Ericaceae
Color flower: Pink in Autumn and Summer
Hardiness: old H4 (hardy)
Color foliage: Green and Yellow in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter
Height: 0.1-0.5 metres
Habit: Bushy
Habit: Generally pest free
Pruning: Pruning group 10
Spreadid: North-facing
Time to ultimate height: 5-10 years
Exposure: Grow in well-drained acidic soil in full sun
Garden characteristics: Banks and Slopes, City/Courtyard Gardens, Coastal, Garden Edging, Patio/Container Plants, Rock Garden, Ground Cover or Low Maintenance

Chrysanthemum ‘Yvonne Arnaud’


Chrysanthemum are erect woody-based perennials with aromatic, pinnately lobed leaves and flowerheads of diverse form, from late summer to late autumn

Medium-flowered, early flowering Outdoor Reflexed chrysanthemums are upright plants with double flowerheads, the ray florets recurved, flowering from late summer or early autumn

‘Yvonne Arnaud’ is a half-hardy perennial to 1.2m in height, with rosy-purple, reflexed flowers 12cm in width, the florets streaked with pale yellow on reverse

Common Name: chrysanthemum ‘Yvonne Arnaud’
Family: Asteraceae
Color flower: Pink, Purple and Pale Yellow in Autumn
Hardiness: old H3 (may need winter protection)
Color foliage: Green in Autumn, Spring and Summer
Height: 1-1.5 metres
Habit: Bushy
Habit: Aphids and leaf miners are common pests. Leaf and bud eelworms can damage stock that has not been heat-treated. Earwigs sometimes damage blooms. Capsid bug and glasshouse red spider mite are occasional pests
Pruning: Cut back to near ground level in the autumn, before lifting and storing for the winter
Spreadid: North-facing
Time to ultimate height: 1-2 years
Exposure: Grow in a sheltered site in full sun in fertile well-drained soil, enriched with organic matter and general purpose fertiliser. Water freely in dry weather. Pinching out the growing tip when the plants are 15-20cm tall to encourage free flowering bushy plants. Staking is usually required. There is no need to deadhead. In mild areas leave in the ground protected by a thick mulch. Elsewhere lift the crowns and store in a greenhouse, raising fresh plants from these each year
Garden characteristics: Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower borders and beds or Cut Flowers