This is a very compact, characterful form with long, slightly spoon-shaped leaves that are bronzed green in spring, but become variably coloured chocolate brown with a sheeny hue and having a dark red midrib. The short spikes of soft blue flowers are a feature in May and June. This is one of those plants that can 'disappear' in shady places so position with care, perhaps as groundcover on light gravel. The species is found growing through most of the British Isles preferring waste land and wooded sites. It is a low growing plant that spreads by means of runners. The flowers, coming in spring, are carried on short spikes.
This delightful columbine has graceful flowers that look as though they've just landed on their slender stalks. The airy looking foliage is light green, rounded and ferny. The McKana hybrids come in various colours; white, creamy yellow, violet, blue and red. Columbines aren't long lived, so it is worth buying a fresh batch each year to fully enjoy their especial enchantment.
This is a white flowered variety of Campanula persicifolia. The flare lipped, cup-shaped flowers are held on slender stalks. They are elegant in appearance and look upwards, rather than demurely at their feet.
A delightful single-flowered cultivar that has snipped petal edges and slightly wavy petals. This is coloured pinkish white with a broad raspberry coloured ring, wavy edged, round the eye of the flower. The flowers are held on stout stems above blue-grey foliage. This flowers for a long season in summer.
This is a compact cultivar that is well-suited to a rock garden or raised bed. The flowers are single and coloured a rich vibrant red with crimson suffusion at the centre that make the flowers glow. They have wavy informal petals with variably fringed edges. These arise from a neat mound of blue-green foliage and appear from late spring to mid-summer and are fragrant.
Flat-faced double and semi-double flowers that sit on compact blue-green foliage. The flowers are small but borne with great freedom from April till July. They have lightly fringed edges and are coloured in shades of white, pink and red-purple. The colours vary somewhat from flower to flower but they generally have a white picotee edge with a large red central area, sometimes this is pink at its edges, sometimes it is more or less suffused with maroon shades. In some cases the flower is largely white. Delightful in a container or a rockery, perhaps even at the front of a border if they have enough space.
This is a useful, low growing, early flowering, plant that produces intense-yellow flowers held on long slender stalks which come early in the season. The foliage makes a strong rosette of dark-green, lobed leaves.
Known for its simple charm and flowers in shades of pastels, blue and purple, it is a robust, pleasing plant that will tolerant quite difficult conditions. It is an iris that has long been in cultivation and there are references to it as far back as the ninth century. It is a European iris and is now considered to be a hybrid rather than a true species.
This is a popular variety of the useful, tolerant, ground-covering plant. This has heart-shaped leaves, silvered, except for a slender green rim and strongly coloured, pink-purple flowers in short columns in late spring or early summer, which make lively conversation with the foliage. Although it tolerates light shade, drought and poor soil, it is best suited to part shade, some moisture and acidic soil.
In late spring this has good-sized heads of warm pink, occasionally white flowers that are close-packed at the head of the flowering stalks. The six petals have a deep-cut 'V' extending about a third the depth of the petal. At the flower's heart there's an eruption of long stamens. The flowers rise from slender base leaves. This is found growing in mountainous areas over northern Europe.
This beautiful little plant has grassy stems that form a neat mound. There are lovely, rose-purple flowers, carried on long stalks above and around the plant in late spring and early summer. The common name derives from the sticky stems which trap insects.
This is a very floriferous selection whose flower power is amplified by its having its flowers spaced closely together on the stems. Periwinkle blue flowers are coddled by dark purple calyxes just above the aromatic foliage from early summer into early autumn
A gentle-looking plant that has clusters of soft blue flowers at the stem tops. They have neat yellow stamens and the flower is held in mahogany calyces. The leaves are elliptic in shape and held alternately on the stem. They are coloured plum-brown in spring and green-up as the season progresses. It flowers in late spring and early summer and needs careful placing because of its soft recessive colours. Give it space so its beauty can be appreciated.
This is the much loved cowslip with a range that extends across Europe into western Asia. It has rich-green, oblong leaves that are held in small clumps. The flowers are borne in April and May and are held on long, sturdy stalks. They form an exuberant spray of individual blooms at the top of the flowering stalk. The sweetly fragrant little flowers come from a very long, creamy-green calyx. They are bright-yellow, the petals flared like little open mouths. The old country drink, cowslip wine, was said to ease migraine.
Appreciated by bees and other pollinating insects, Sedum spurium 'Coccineum' features unique purple-tinged foliage, and come summer, will blanket gardens with starry red flowers. With a low spreading habit, 'Coccineum' is well suited to rock gardens, and its purple and red colours are ideal for establishing some late summer warmth. To maintain this perennial's compactness, cut back after flowering.
This plant has the merit of flowering late in the season, in August and September. If grown in a raised bed or rock garden, where everything else has finished long before, it has great appeal. It makes a cushion of small green leaves. The fresh looking, carmine-red flowers are held on long stalks and last for some weeks.