As we head into July, our plant Manager Ross shares another treasure, Achillea!
“As anyone who knows me will tell you, I’m a sucker for a hot border! Bright bold red, yellow and orange colours bursting from the flower bed. And few do this better than a wedge of achillea!
They work brilliantly in a variety of situations. You can plant them in full sun to partial shade – just make sure the soil is well drained and doesn’t become waterlogged. Achillea hate their feet being too wet for long periods. I recommend adding horticultural grit to the planting hold to aid this. A great plant for biodiversity as they are loved by bees, butterflies, and a special favourite of hoverflies.
They will slowly spread to form a generously sized clump. This can be lifted and divided every three years or so to revitalise the plant and give you more plants. But you can also propagate cuttings in the spring, alternatively you can let heads go to seed in the autumn, and collect this seed to sow in the new year. Deadhead old blooms to encourage more growth, then cut back in the autumn.
My top 5 varieties, in size order.
- Achillea ‘Moon Dust’ – Pale lemon flowerheads, growing to 50cm. Dense habit makes for great clump blocks of colour.
- Achillea ‘Cerise Queen’ – Wonderful hot pink variety as cerise pink blooms are darker at the edges and lighter in the centre giving a great variation. Grows to 60cm height.
- Achillea ‘Fanal’ / ‘The Beacon’ – Stunning bright orange/red flowers with yellow eyes give such a burst of colour on the border. A favourite to use as a cut flower. Grows to 75cm high.
- Achillea ‘Terracotta’ – An amazing mosaic of colour, bright orange which fades to yellow with age. Grows to 80cm high.
- Achillea ‘Cloth of Gold’ – light green foliage and deep golden yellow heads, with a lovely tall habit, growing to over 1.5 metres, making them a winner at the back of the borders.
We have lots of varieties in stock at Bumbles, look forward to seeing you soon!”