Lychnis

German Catchfly

A relative of Dianthus, the genus name of this low maintenance, easy-to-grow perennial comes from the Greek word lychos, meaning “lamp,” and it is clearly an attempt to describe the light that comes from the splendid-for-cutting flower clusters that can brighten any garden space.

Narrow, almost grasslike, green and often evergreen leaves form neat rosettes, while sticky stems earn the strange common name of “Catchfly.” Tolerant of poor soil and dry conditions, Lychnis captures plenty of attention when placed front and center along a pathway, in a crevice or atop a wall.

<i>Lychnis coronaria</i> ‘Alba’

Soft as flannel, silver washed and wooly, the short petioled gray-green foliage crafts a stylish basal rosette that persists through the winter and beckons a touch each time we pass by. Wide branching stems clad in paired leaves wave quantities of solitary, 1 to 2 in. wheel-shaped blooms illuminated in pure white hues. Never fretting about poor dry soils and sometimes short-lived but readily reseeding, this composed southeast european native can be massed in the border for a superb pearly-hued punch with Phlox ‘David’s Lavender’ or slipped into the rockery.

Blooms July – September.

Size: 2' 0" high x 18" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Soft-as-flannel silver-gray basal rosettes bolster a multitude of large, crisp white flowers, each with a prominent central pink blush. Perched atop leafy upright whitish green flowering stalks, the variably colored blooms promise a luminous long-lasting show, while the lance-shaped fuzzy leaves remain evergreen in mild locales. Wrangling lean soil, cold winters and dry conditions, this hard-to-find comely Lychnis requires good drainage, endures bright shade and mostly grows as a short-lived perennial, yet readily reseeds.

Blooms July– September

Size: 2' 0" high x 18" wide.

Zone 3/4.

<i>Lychnis viscaria</i> ‘Feuer’

Bearing profuse clusters of fiery red, five-petaled blooms, this Lychnis species is splendid indeed. The vitality of the smouldering flowers against the tufts of cool green foliage offers an encore as other spring blossoms begin to fade.

Blooms May–June.

Size: 20" high x 12" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Tidy grassy hummocks furnish an illuminated display of pure white flowers gathered in copious, nearly whorled, rounded heads on strong stems. For a refreshing small-scale vignette, pair these quintessential hues with Dianthus ‘Mendlesham Maid’ and Dracocephalum ‘Fuji White’.

Blooms May–June.

Size: 20" high x 12" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

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Saturday Strolls & Plant Chats 2018!


Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Our featured plant: Achillea 'Hella Glashoff'

Amazing Achilleas, Invigorate your summer plantings!

Amazing Achilleas…. These sturdy, dependable perennials produce small indivdual blooms that populate broad, flat flower heads, lending welcome horizontal elements to any garden bed. Ideal for bouquets, fresh or dried, the long-lasting blossoms range in color from alabaster to soft yellow and gold, as well as terracotta, pink and sassy red. Cut back their flowers in midsummer and enjoy a fall encore! Spicy scented, attractive fern-like green or gray-tinged foliage cloaks their strong straight stems. Slowly spreading and somewhat drought tolerant, Yarrow seem to thrive on neglect. They can handle low soil fertility plus coastal wind and salt spray. Be sure to check out our diverse on-line Achillea selections!

Invigorate your summer plantings.… A few simple maintenance techniques will help plants appear fresh throughout the upcoming dog days of summer. The addition of a chipped bark mulch or well-rotted compost, applied as a top-dressing, not only reduces water requirements, but generally makes it easier for plants to maintain perky looking leaves and vigorous habits. A July or early August trimming of long-blooming perennials, such as Nepetas and most Geraniums ensures myriad flowers that will keep on coming ‘til the first frost. Featured in this newsletter, you’ll find the fabulous plants that caught my eye as Boobah and I took our morning walk through the nursery and adjacent display borders this past week. Hopefully, you’ll have room to ensconce several of them in a well-traveled spot. Happy Digging!

Digging Dog's August 2018 Newsletter Link

For a peek at some past newsletters, please visit the following links:

Digging Dog's Late July 2018 Newsletter Link Digging Dog's July 2018 Newsletter Link Digging Dog's June 2018 Newsletter Link
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