Lychnis Vesuvius – 2 litres
Most gardeners are familiar with rose campion, or Maltese cross, Another garden-worthy Lychnis is the cultivar ‘Vesuvius’. This cultivar is perennial but may be short-lived under some conditions. The plant grows up to 18” tall, and is hardy.
The flowers are a brilliant orange-red – like molten lava flowing from the volcano, Mt. Vesuvius. They are simple, with 5 deeply notched petals, but they are quite showy because they above the foliage, which maximizes their effect. The flowers are quite large and arrive in early- to mid-summer. The flowers are followed by interesting seed pods that turn brown when mature.
The foliage emerges a dark bronzy-maroon to purplish colour, then becomes bronze-green with purplish stems that enhance the vivid flower. the leaves are covered with short, stout hairs, giving them a somewhat rough or bristly feel – we think the slugs probably wont like this.
Plants can be pinched early in the season to induce branching for bushier plants. Deadhead frequently to encourage flowering and prevent self-seeding. This variety does best with even moisture throughout the growing season.
Being a named variety, ‘Vesuvius’ should be propagated by division in early spring or basal cuttings in late summer. It will self-seed in the garden, producing plants quite similar to the parent. Plants from seed sown indoors early may bloom the first year.