Hypericum is one of the most popular of all shrubs, but the common-or-garden H. calycinum has no place in the rockery. It is far too invasive – there are much choicer types forthis situation. All the Hypericums, shrubs and evergreen perennials alike, are easy to grow. They will thrive in any soil which does not become waterlogged in winter, but the dwarf rockery types require rather more sun than their robust brothers in the shrub garden.

VARIETIES: The best rockery shrub is H. polyphyllum – height 6in., spread 1 ft.

Flowering period: July-August. Above the mound of blue-grey leaves the typical Hypericum flowers appear – golden saucers with prominent stamens. H. coris is an evergreen perennial rather than a shrub – height 6 in., spread 1 ft.

Flowering period: July-September. The yellow flowers are star-shaped. There is also a ground-cover species-H.reptans (height 3 in., spread ½ ft.

Flowering period: July- September).

SITE AND SOIL: Any well-drained soil will do – thrives best in full sun. PROPAGATION: Plant cuttings in a cold frame in early summer.

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