Verbascum chaixii 'Album'
An easy biennial making leaves one year and flowers the next; the large drift in my garden makes a joyful, shimmering, low-level skyline of white spires thronging with a peaceful population of pollen drowsy bees; it self seeds freely so you won’t have to ever buy new plants
- Position: full sun
- Soil: poor, well-drained, alkaline soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: May to August
- Hardiness: fully hardy (but short-lived)
Bold spires of saucer-shaped, white flowers with mauve centres from May to August. One of the most reliable and long-flowering varieties of verbascum. Seeds sown in a cold frame in late spring or early summer produce rosettes of hairy, mid-green leaves and flowers the following year. Perfect for a sunny border.
- Garden care:Apply a 5-7cm (2-3in) mulch around the base of the plant in autumn to protect from winter extremes, taking care not to cover the crown. Stake in spring with bamboo canes or twiggy prunings before the flowers appear. Mullein moth caterpillars can be a problem, pick off the insects in early June as soon as they appear. Remove faded flower spikes.
It is worth keeping in mind that these plants are mainly biennial, so although they usually self-seed freely, the plant will only live for two years.
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