Knautia macedonica 'Mars Midget'
- Position: full sun
- Soil: moderately-fertile, well-drained, preferably alkaline soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: July to September
- Hardiness: fully hardy
Deep crimson, pincushion-like flowers appear on slender stems from July to September. This is a dwarf variety of the popular perennial that is more compact, but still has good-sized flowers that grow up to 5cm (2in) across and will bring long-lasting colour to a mixed or herbaceous border. It's best planted in well-drained, soil in full sun and supported with twiggy pea sticks. Although it prefers alkaline soil, it will thrive in neutral soil, too. It is a magnet for beees and butterflies.
- Garden care: Support with twiggy pea sticks or brushwood well before the flowers appear. Cut down to the ground in autumn. This plant is susceptible to powdery mildew. To help prevent this, mulch well with rotted manure or compost in autumn and keep it well watered.
Mediterranean gardens can take on various guises from the rustic and rambling to the formal elegance of an Italian courtyard. However, they all have key features in common, including the use of exotic, sometimes tender, drought-tolerant plants in pots and...Read full article