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  • Pelargonium
    • tomentosum   CAG02449

      (Peppermint scented geranium)
      Height20cm
      Width2m
      Flowering SeasonSpring
      WaterM - L
      LightSun - L. Sh.
      for $7.00earn 35 points

      A divine groundcover for warm mediterranean gardens where it forms a plush carpet of thick and velvety, fresh green, broadly lobed, strongly peppermint scented foliage that is overlaid in spring with airy clusters of small white flowers.

      From sheltered areas in the mountains of southern Africa it is at its best in sandy soil that doesn't become too dry and with some protection from midday summer sun. Making it ideally suited for blanketing under fruit trees and roses, spilling over east or west facing retaining walls or embracing a cloistered bench taking advantage of its refreshing scent. It does tolerate drying out once established by shedding and folding its leaves, I make the most of this by having it mingled with the summer growing Artemisia ‘Valerie Finnis’ for two phase year round cover.

      Frost tender but regenerates rapidly from the robust stems.

  • Plectranthus
    • argentatus   CAG00690

      (Silver coleus)
      Height60cm
      Width1m
      Flowering SeasonSu - Au
      WaterM
      LightLight Shade
      for $7.00earn 35 points

      Large rounded leaves cut from silver velvet adorn this quick growing, soft stemmed, shrubby, evergreen perennial from Queensland. The ideal silver foil for shady gardens across the country, needing only protection from direct frost and a soil that's not too dry year round. During Autumn and Winter spikes of delicate, white flowers, are freely produced.

      Trim regularly to maintain density.

    • barbatus   CAG03015
      Height1.5m
      Width1m
      Flowering SeasonAu - Sp
      WaterM
      LightSun - L. Sh.
      for $7.00earn 35 points

      Remarkably hardy for a plant with big, soft leaves from tropical Africa, and abroad, though frost does make it sad.
      Quickly forms a mound of upright stems clothed in large, serrated, broadly lance shaped and pungently fruit-mint scented leaves, all cut form thick, light green velvet like a gardener's plush toy and bearing through most of the year, slender spikes of pitcher like purplish-blue flowers. No it's not a Salvia.

      For any well drained soil. Needs a reasonable amount of summer moisture to do well but will unquestionably survive a summer holiday. To maximize plushness cut back hard when vigorous basal growth is apparent.

  • Salvia

    (Sage)
    Lamiaceae

    A genus whose popularity has risen exponentially in recent times. Offering a diverse range of form and colour there is a Salvia for nearly every garden situation with more and more being discovered and described all the time. The count now stands somewhere in excess of 1000, including subspecies, according to The Plant List. They are found on every continent except Antarctica.

    From a gardeners perspective they can not all be treated the same, they come from many different climates after all, but as a rule of thumb can be grouped into winter rainfall and summer rainfall species and with few exceptions they all prefer well drained soil.

    Soft leaved species from Central and South America are usually autumn and winter flowering. Coming from summer rainfall areas they typically need protection from dry heat and the accompanying high light intensity and they vary in their tolerance of winter damp. As with most plants the larger the leaves the more water they require, this also dictates how fast they grow with many growing several metres in a single season.

    Species from south western North America, South Africa, the Mediterranean and the Canary Islands are all winter growers and are tolerant or demanding of dry heat and summer drought. Slower growing but usually longer lived these all tend to have small, densely haired, silver or grey leaves or a combination of these traits which help them conserve moisture. Most of these require no additional water in Perth and are well adapted to our climate. They tend tend to flower from spring into summer.


    Prune back to where vigorous new basal growth is seen, never to dead wood, they appear to store little food in their stems and without leaves stand a chance of starving to death or at least struggle to regenerate. The exception is those few that are tuberous or clump forming, these can be cut to ground level once the stems start dying back in late autumn.
    • fruticosa   CAG02865
      Height80cm
      Width1m
      Flowering SeasonSp - Su
      WaterL
      LightFull Sun
      for $7.00earn 35 points

      Imagine a shrubby Lamb's ears (Stachys byzantina), only softer and that is actually heat and drought tolerant.

      A fast growing, mound forming shrub whose upright stems are clothed in tri-lobed leaves of softest grey-green velvet with slender spikes of pale pink, two lipped, tubular flowers borne profusely on into summer.

      From Crete and easily grown in any well drained sunny soil, alkaline coastal sands should be ideal. As with most proper mediterranean plants excessive irrigation / rich soil / shade during its summer rest phase will lead to morbid obesity and premature death.

      After flowering trim back the spent stems to where robust new shoots can be seen.

    • desoleana   CAG02225
      Height1m
      Width1m
      Flowering SeasonSp - Au
      WaterL
      LightFull Sun
      CURRENTLY UNAVAILABLE

      The best of the large leaved Mediterranean species for hot dry conditions (i.e. where S. sclarea and S. argentea fail).

      A bold shrubby Sardinian perennial forming a mound of large, thick and felty, almost triangular, grey-green leaves from stiff hairy stems and bearing spikes of soft blue and white flowers throughout the warmer months. Pungently aromatic.

      Easily grown in any well drained sunny soil. Cut back the flowering stems to the point of dense new growth in autumn.

  • Stachys
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