Eupatorium – Maculatum
Atropurpureum “glow”. This is the plant shown on BBC Gardeners World in October 2013 with Carol Klein. Magnificent 7 foot perennial with Wine Red flowers in summer until the frosts. It loves a moist soil, so if planted in a non moist situation, we think the result will be a shorter, more containable clump, much easier to control. We have always loved this stately giant and are delighted that it is now “approved of ”. I first grew this giant 10 years ago very successfully.
Spring: sow from January to late June, early sowings will flower the same season.
Autumn: sow in September or October once the heat of summer has gone.
For both, sow seeds finely onto the surface of trays or pots containing moist seed compost. Just cover with a sprinkling of sieved compost or vermiculite. Place in a plastic bag or cover pots or trays with perspex and place in a position to maintain an optimum temperature of 20°C (68°F)
Keep the compost moist but not saturated, water from the base of the container and drain thoroughly. Germination usually takes 21 to 40 days at 18 to 24°C (65 to 75°F). Remove the cover once the seedlings begin to germinate to allow air to circulate, otherwise they may suffer from damping off disease.
Thin (prick out) seeds as they become large enough to handle into 7cm (3in) pots, leaving the seed trays intact for other seedlings that may germinate later. Harden off young plants gradually for 10 to 15 days before planting out.
In poor soil it is worth incorporating some organic matter before planting. Plant out 100cm (39in) apart into moist but well drained soil in sun or part shade.
Water deeply to encourage roots to grow deeply, resulting in a healthier, more drought tolerant plant. Avoid overhead watering if possible.