Referring to a woolly plant with bent stems, this diverse North American genus aptly procures its name from the Greek word erion, which translates “wool,” and gonu meaning “knee or joint.” Our noteworthy Wild Buckwheat selections offer attractive foliage and intrepid personas coupled with a flood of blooms for pollinators and gardeners alike.
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Though its lighthearted cultivar name and rather serious sounding common moniker may conjure divergent images, this reliable underused perennial has virtues everyone agrees on: long bloom period, ease of maintenance, cold hardiness and superb drought tolerance. Gray-green paddle-like leaves compose a tidy, dense low growing rosette beneath the bounty of beautiful bright golden umbels. Adored by bees, butterflies and hummingbirds, the parasol-shaped blooms mature with bronzy-orange hues and later develop intriguing seed heads. Sunshine, good air circulation and dry, fast-draining lean soil will keep ‘Little Rascal’ from making too much mischief!
Size: 16" high x 16" wide.
Hardy to zone 5.
Reputed to be the showiest small Buckwheat available, this rare, low mounding perennial subshrub exhibits an easy-care drought-tolerant bent, which provides significant food for bees, butterflies and beneficial insects, as well as birds and small mammals. Pouffed rounded clusters of long-blooming, vibrant rose-pink flowers perch on tall stout stalks, while petite, long-petioled wavy gray-green leaves with white woolen undersides shape a compact evergreen tussock. Populating California’s Channel Islands, Red Buckwheat prefers alkaline soil, withstands clay plus coastal conditions, and can be massed on dry hillsides or planted amid rockwork and atop walls.
Size: 12" high x 2' 0" – 3' 0" wide.
Hailing from western Colorado, this long-lived Plants Select introduction celebrates a colorful tough-as-nails constitution that triumphs over cold, heat, drought and deer. Low slow-spreading mats of small leathery green leaves premier copious tiny bright yellow blossoms on 12 to 15 in. stalks. Favored by beneficial insects, bee, birds and butterflies, the striking cut-flower-perfect blooms deepen to orange and eventually turn rust by autumn, while the attractive evergreen foliage develops red and purple hues. Well-suited for troughs, edging, alpine gardens and broad sweeps, ‘Psdowns’ relishes either a lean sandy soil or an average garden loam, an early spring trim plus plenty of sun.
Size: 12" – 16" high x 18" – 2' 0" wide.
Hardy to zone 3.