About Good Scents

The cut flower business ended in 2011 but I continue to post other items about gardening.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Erigeron speciosus (Fleabane)

There are two common seed varieties of Erigeron speciosus, 'Pink Jewel' and 'Azure Fairy' and I grow both of them. The flowers are pink and pale purple with yellow centers and look like finely fringed asters. They are about 1"-2" across and are borne in clusters on top of the stems in mid t0 late June.

Fleabane is perennial and does not bloom much if at all the first year. It is also relatively short-lived and for me at least a third of the plants die within 3 seasons. But, the seed is really cheap and easy to start so I start some every year or so and always have plenty. The seed is surface sown and comes up within a week. I planted mine today and since I like both colors I grow equal numbers of each.

Erigeron is another one of those flowers I appreciate as a cut flower because of the size, color, texture contrast it provides for other, shower flowers like delphiniums and lilies. Because it is short-lived, I am less fond of it for a perennial border. It is apt to start dying off just as you decide you really like how it looks with your blue delphiniums or your white lilies. On the other hand, if you don't cut all the flowers and are not a compulsive weeder it will self seed a bit and you might have it forever.

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