Actaea matsumurae 'White Pearl'
bugbane (syn. Cimicifuga)
- Position: partial shade
- Soil: moist, fertile, humus-rich soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: September and October
- Flower colour: creamy-white
- Hardiness: fully hardy
A dramatic, stately perennial, this is a particularly useful plant because it comes into its own late in the season, when many flowers have finished, and because it thrives in damp shade. The slender, bottlebrush-like flowers emerge in autumn from green buds and open creamy white. Try it at the back of a border, between evergreens, or to light up a shady part of the garden. Avoid removing the faded flowerheads, since they develop into pretty, lime-green seedheads.
In a recent article in the The Daily Telegraph, Dr James Compton - the man responsible for their classification - thought this plant needed atmospheric moisture to thrive. Think of trillium country, he said. On the acid side of neutral, light and leaf-mouldy but able to retain moisture.
- Garden care: Add lots of well-rotted leaf mould or composted pine needles when planting. Support using ring stakes well before the flowers appear. Lift and divide congested colonies in late autumn or early spring.
- Harmful if eaten/skin irritant
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