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Windflowers… At this time of the year I think of tall stalks of blushed white flowers waving in the breeze as it slides through my back yard…In spring, I think of knee-high blotches of bright color, special and rare after a winter of green.
Last year, I decided to plant masses of white A. coronaria tubers in my parking strip, accented with bright tulips. The result was such a treat, they just kept blooming. Other than a little up keep on spent foliage, it was a no-effort terrific, florific display!
Some of the most popular and available species of Anemone are:
Anemone blanda (Grecian Windflower) These diminutive daisy-like flowers of blue, pink and white hold themselves a mere 2-4” above dark green leathery foliage in April and May. Grown from tubers planted in the fall, they will also self-seed once established, eventually carpeting their spot in the semi-shady garden with their softly illuminating colors.
Anemone coronaria (Poppy Anemone) Another fall planted tuber, these 10-12” beauties have a more poppy-shaped flower in an array of jewel-like shades of red, pink, blue, purple and white. Varieties come in both single and double flowers, and provide a kaleidoscope of color in your springtime sunny (or partly sunny) garden.
Anemone x hybrida (Japanese Anemone) These are the graceful white and pink stands of 2-4’ tall and wide plants that help the late-summer / early-autumn garden come alive after the heat of high summer. No accident that many think of this as the “best of the fall flowers!”
Varieties: “Honore Jobert” – single white flowers with yellow eye “September Charm” – pale to deep pink single flowers with yellow eye “Whirlwind” – double white flowers with slightly twisted petals
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Common name(s): Windflower, Japanese Anemone
Origin: 120 species from throughout the temperate regions of the Northern and Southern hemispheres.
Culture: In general Anemone do best in woodland conditions in light, cool, well-draining soil rich in organic matter. If your soil is a little warmer, increase watering slightly. Many species are flexible about soil conditions, but all do require good drainage. Windflower species require at least 4 hours of sunlight.
Pests & Diseases: Largely pest and disease free. Creatures fond of Anemone species include slugs, snails, moth and butterfly larvae. A slug bait such as Sluggo will deter snails and slugs. Products are available that will address the larva if they become an issue, but then you'll have less butterflies later-so that part is really up to you.
Maintenance: Grooming and staking may be necessary. That's it!
Propagation: For autumn flowering types propagate by root cuttings in spring. Fall transplanting is usually unsuccessful with this type. Young plants or transplants are sometimes slow to get started but are usually abundant and spreading by year three. With spring flowering types divide the tubers once the plant goes dormant for the summer. Seeds are ready to sow as soon as they are ripe.