Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Persicaria amplexicaulis, the Mountain Fleeceflower

I almost always feel like the proverbial "kid in a candy store" every time I stumble across a nursery that specializes in some genus or type of plant, and see their list (or website) that boasts dozens of varieties that I've never even heard of.

Such was the case the other day, when I discovered the website of Persicaria breeder Chris Ghyselen from Belgium. Over the years I've grown maybe two to three forms at the nursery, but never one in my garden for some reason. I'm not sure why exactly -- it certainly is a beautiful and useful plant.

Here's a variety of P. amplexicaulis (syn. Polygonum amplexicaule), the Mountain Fleece Flower combined with Geranium 'Rozanne' in a planting over at the Niagara Parks' School of Horticulture & Botanical Gardens.

It's possible my hesitation comes from the fact that Persicaria/Polygonum has a bad reputation for a few species that are noxious weeds. Armitage does state that this species requires significant space, and forms dense large clumps that slowly get larger with time.

That being said, they flower from mid-summer until frost, and they look just so European -- Piet Oudolf design plant for sure!

In anycase, I was very impressed with Chris' website -- it lists over 30 cultivars of P. amplexicaulis -- very cool.

Here's to dirt under your nails.

MPD, the coolplantsguy

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