Phlomis

A very useful group of herbaceous perennials and evergreen shrubs. Tolerant of poor, free-draining soils, but will extend into an average garden border. Most growing in full sun, but P. russeliana will take some shade. Foliage is aromatic and often attractive in its own right, with some looking silvery stachys-like. Flowers, yellow, pink or purple, in whorls on often vertical stems. The seed heads can be left standing over winter. There are around 100 species, with around a third from the Mediterranean area, in open, rocky places. Phlomis derives from the Greek phlogmos, meaning 'flame' as the leaves of some species were used as lamp wicks.

Bilaterally symmetrical flowers restrict the range of pollinators to bees, especially bumblebeees, the size of which reflects the size of the flowers in each species. In the autumn, the whorled seed-heads are attractive in their own right, and contain seeds that are food for finches such as goldfinches and siskins. The seed-heads also provide shelter for beneficial predators such as ladybirds, as well as smaller insects and spiders that may be gleaned by wrens. The leaves often have a couple of leafhopper species living on them; again attractive in their own right, these suckers cause little in the way of discernable damage to the foliage, and also provide titbits for tits. Some species have woolly foliage, and these are used by wool carder-bees: female bees bite the hairs off the leaves, roll them into a ball and take them to a nest-hole where they are fashioned into a breeding cell. In contrast, males spend their time defending suitable plants against all-comers in an attempt to persuade the females that 'their' hairy leaves are the best!

Some plants have been renamed as Phlomoides including the very garden worthy P. tuberosa and forms.

£13.50
Potted, but not quite ready for sale, check again soon or register your interest Growing on
£8.00
Potted, but not quite ready for sale, check again soon or register your interest Growing on
£8.50
Plants to be propagated in the near future, register your interest To Be Propagated
£8.00
Plants to be propagated in the near future, register your interest To Be Propagated
£8.00
Plants to be propagated in the near future, register your interest To Be Propagated
£20.00
Plants to be propagated in the near future, register your interest To Be Propagated
 
COMPARISON BASKET COMPARE

You are now leaving Beth Chatto's Plants & Gardens to access the Beth Chatto Education Trust website.

Stay on current site
Continue to Education Trust site