ACAENA or NEW ZEALAND BURR

P. A race of decidedly invasive carpeting plants which should be planted in full sun and poor soil. The small petalless flowers are usually crimson or purple, forming dense heads armed with hooks which cause them to catch in the fur of animals, especially New Zealand sheep. When these small burrs catch in the sheep’s wool, they are impossible to remove and the wool is accordingly useless when clipped. Acaenas succeed where little else will grow, e.g. underneath conifers. They are especially useful for planting between paving stones. Both foliage and fruits usually colour well in autumn. Acaena Buchananii, A. microphylla and A. novae-ealandiae are well-known species.

Propagation is absurdly easy, merely entailing division and replanting in October or March.

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