Astrantia major subsp. involucrata 'Shaggy'
masterwort ( syn Margery Fish )
This needs time to settle but the irregular green and white flowers, all of differing sizes, and the ragged dainty bracts make this a May delicacy not to be missed
- Position: full sun or partial shade
- Soil: fertile, moist, preferably humus-rich soil
- Rate of growth: average to fast-growing
- Flowering period: June to August
- Flowers: white
- Other features: the flowers are excellent for cutting and drying
- Hardiness: fully hardy
- Garden care: Incorporate plenty of organic matter when planting and water well in dry weather especially newly established plants. Lift and divide large clumps in early spring and apply a generous 5-7 cm mulch of well-rotted manure or garden compost around the plant. Divided specimens may take some time to establish since they don't like having their roots disturbed.
Wonderful, white, pincushion flowers with a collar of extra long, green tipped petals on wiry, branched stems above deeply divided, dark green leaves. This astrantia is thought to have originated in Margery Fish's garden at East Lambrook in Somerset, and christened there and then. It is one of the best pale varieties, with large flowerheads and more deeply cut foliage. Like all astrantia, it can cope with a range of soils from alkaline to heavy, damp soil in dappled shade.
Astrantias have been cultivated in Britain since the 16th century and have numerous common names, such as melancholy gentleman, Hattie's pincushion and the more well known masterwort.
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