LIMONIUM Sea Lavender, Statice

Limonium is a dual-purpose plant – grow it to produce a summer-long display of frothy clouds of tiny blooms in beds and borders, and also cut it to provide a supply of ‘everlasting flowers’ for indoor decoration. For drying, cut the stems just before the flowers are open and tie in bunches. Hang upside down in a cool place away from sunlight. Limonium (more commonly known as Statice) is often grown as an annual, but the perennial varieties are taller and bear masses of pink or lavender flowers year after year. It will grow in poor and stony soils, requiring little attention apart from the need to be cut down to ground level in autumn. The rootstock is woody and the plant takes some time to become established – do not propagate by dividing old plants.

Limonium sinuatum

Image via Wikipedia

Statice: Limonium sinuatum

Statice is one of the most popular of the everlasting flowers. It comes in a wonderful range of colours and is easy to grow and to dry, making it a plant that most gardeners will want to cultivate. It Can be grown in special beds or in -a mixed border.

Although treated as an annual, strictly speaking Statice is a perennial and is related to the Sea Lavender that is a common sight on coastal mud flats. Among the features that distinguish it from other Limonium are the raised wings or flanges down the stems. The funnel-shaped flowers are held in flat bunches. They come in a wide range of colours, which are retained when dried, making them valuable for everlasting arrangements.

There are quite a number of different forms to choose from, some packed as individual colours, but others as a mixture. One of the best strains is ‘Fortress’, which is available in several colours. As well as L. sinuatum, there are several other species to choose from: L. bonduellt has bright yellow flowers, while those of L. bellidifolium consist of sprays of small. Pale lavender blooms; L. suworowii is different in that it produces dense spikes of flowers that are pink in colour.

Statice offers a wide range of colours to choose from; seeds come as mixtures or single colours.

This plant requires a light, sunny position.

Although it likes a well-drained soil, Statice should not be allowed to dry out completely. Water during periods when there is no rainfall.

Statice - Limonium from Lalbagh Garden, Bangal...

Image via Wikipedia

Statice is treated as a half-hardy annual; in other words, it will tolerate the light, late Spring frosts, so it can be planted out while there is still a threat of them occurring.

Seed can be sown in the open, but this will produce a late crop. It is better to sow in early Spring under glass in gentle heat. The germination of some species or cultivars may be a bit erratic.

Drying is easy: pick the flowers with as long a stem as possible when the head is almost fully open. More stems will continue replacing the cut ones until Autumn. Hang them upside down in bunches in a warm, airy place until they have dried.

Some people feel that the wings make the stems look too bulky or untidy, so strip them off when drying.

VARIETIES: L. latifolium (Statice latifolia) is the basic species – height 2.5 ft. Spacing 1.5 ft.

Flowering period: July-September. The spreading flower panicles appear above the rosettes of oval leaves – good varieties are ‘Blue Cloud’ (large, lavender flowers), ‘Collyers Pink’ (pink flowers) and ‘Violetta’ (violet-blue flowers).

SITE AND SOIL: Any well-drained garden soil will do – thrives best in full sun.

PROPAGATION: Sow seeds under glass in spring or take root cuttings in winter.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.