Friday 20 April 2018

Late addition, try Anemone nemorosa, the wood anemone and replant it now

Opens to the sunshine
I might have added this to my last post about naturalising dwarf bulbs but it was getting a bit long….. and Anemone nemorosa isn’t a real bulb!

Peter Williams is wild about good garden plants growing  er - in the wild, and even more so native plants good for the garden. Remember his picture last year of a huge clump of Dicentra formosa in Ray Wood at Castle Howard that had grown undisturbed for forty years.

Enough to excite Peter. How did it get there, a wild clump by the road?
In this case he took a ten minute detour on our way to the lecture at the Yorkshire Arboretum also at Castle Howard. He wanted some pictures and when he had previously spotted the wood anemone growing wild by the road he did not have his camera. (no matter the iPhone in his pocket).
Not as big as the drift of dicentra it was a strong growing clump of a square metre or so. Completely isolated, where had it come from? From a stray rhizome or was it the site of an ancient wood?

Wild at the roadside
If you buy Anemone nemorosa as an alpine in a pot it looks such a delicate plant. The nurseryman had no doubt potted up a tiny sprouting rhizome. Get it going in the garden and if it were not so wonderful it would be a bit of a thug,
It has a very strong almost woody fibrous strong root-like rhizome and after a year or three a new small plant will make a very fine garden statement every early April.

I have been transplanting my own Anemone nemorosa this week!
Even though my soil is very wet and the plants are coming into flower. Indeed on my sandy soil plenty of moisture is needed to get it going

One of my clumps has been under water since Christmas. See where I took out a spadeful.....
...... and teased out divisions and here it is the very next day in my new project of growing in grass
It is a really tough plant. I originally propagated mine along with a single-flowered peony from the only surviving garden plants in the then overgrown Bolton Percy cemetery forty years ago.

Original clump in Bolton Percy cemetery. I persuaded Jackie Giles to divide and plant a couple of spadefuls yesterday. The soft undug very wet clay soil was excellent for slitting the pieces in
This year one of my now large clumps has been flooded for three months and is now flowering as normal. Last week I transplanted some pieces all over the place. I have even enthused the team who now maintain Bolton Percy to do the same from the original cemetery clump.

Some garden cultivars and similar species
Thank you Peter Williams for these

Peter's posh totty

Peter Williams' clump of Dicentra formosa at Castle Howard
Last week's post about naturalising bulbs
A very early blog effort where I jump on wet soil
From the ridiculous to the sublime about gardening when it is wet


  1. There are many wild flowers that are garden worthy. I just love the native primroses but I’m not so sure of planting cultivated plants in the wild if they end up out competing our native species.

    1. Peter's large drift of dicentra linked to was in a managed woodland/wild area.
      The nearest I get to planting garden plants in the wild is in my cemetery gardens which have also been very rich in wild flowers.
      Sadly now I have discontinued managing the Worsbrough cemetery you will soon be able to see how native plants can take care of themselves.

  2. One of my favourite anemones, but not native in ontario Canada. We do have a similar plant that is native; Wood Anemone
    Anemone quinquefolia


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