HARDY PERENNIALS: ERIGERON

These are valuable members of the Daisy Family, which always flower freely during the June-August period. Good drainage is their main requirement and a preference for being planted —or divided when necessary in early spring rather than autumn. Nowadays one scarcely ever sees species being used in gardens because so many more colourful hybrids have been introduced. Outstanding amongst these came from Karl Foerster, the famous German hybridist who was still active until his death in 1970 at the age of 97, E. ‘Foerster’’s Liebling’ is therefore appropriately named, and it must have gladdened him to distribute a really reliable pink Erigeron with flowers almost double, at a modest height of 18 inches. E. ‘Rose Triumph’, a little lighter in colour, is another of Foerster’s darlings, and though E. ‘Prosperity’ was one of my raising, it has exactly the same habit of a sturdy clumpy plant, the 18 inches flower stems carry semi double mauve blue flowers in June and July. Other good Erigerons exist in the upstanding 2 foot E. ‘Amity’, with lilac rose single flowers, and the single pink E. ‘Charity’.

E. ‘Darkest of AW grows erectly, with violet blue rayed flowers, as has the dwarfer long flowering E. ‘Dignity’. E. ‘Lilofee’’, is a taller semi double mauve blue, E. ‘Gaiety’ is single deep pink and E. ‘Sincerity’ a single lavender blue. The dwarfest of modern hybrids is E. ‘Dimity’, which with others ending with ‘ity’ were names I chose. This has soft foliage and stems radiate to make a low mound only 10 inches high, carrying firstly orange shaded buds which turn to pink as they open. This variety needs to’be cut back as soon as ever flowering is over and better just before, in order to promote the renewed basal growth it needs for overwintering.

One species worth mentioning is E. simplex, not only because it is white flowered, but because it flowers in May and June, and has a very neat habit, with a height of under 12 inches. ‘

ERIGERON 'Darkest of All'

ERIGERON ‘Darkest of All

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