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The ultimate midsummer bee plant with soft, stubby blue bottle brushes tinged with black- purple -the antidote to sunny orange calendulas
- Position: full sun
- Soil: well-drained, fertile soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: July to October
- Hardiness: hardy (borderline)
Hyssops are great for adding height to a border, with whirls of long-lasting, tiny flowers arranged like a bottlebrush and pointed, aromatic fresh green leaves that are attractive to butterflies. They are short-lived though, and may need replacing every few years, especially after a cold or wet winter. 'Black Adder' has smoky, violet flowers on long spires from July to October. Try it as part of a Mediterranean scheme or in a sunny, well-drained border among ornamental grasses.
- Garden care: Don't cut back the faded flower-stems until early spring, as they provide interest in the winter months. Lift and divide congested colonies in spring.
Tender perennials, such as pelargoniums, fuchsias, osteospermums and marguerites look great all summer, but unless they are given protection from the harsh winter weather, they will need to be replaced each spring. If you can do this, they will last for yRead full article
When the heat bounces off the ground and almost overwhelms you some plants are revelling in this heat. Aromatic plants with a Mediterranean provenance like the Agastache come into their own. They are fabulous additions to the summer garden adding a vertiRead full article
There's one garden essential that brings a planting scheme to life and it's upright flower spikes that soar heavenwards. They add drama and perspective to all your other planting and, as they open from the bottom upwards, each spire offers a glorious coRead full article