Salvia verticillata 'Purple Rain'
- available to order from late autumn
- 2 litre pot
- Standard £4.95
This perennial dies back to below ground level each year in autumn, then fresh new growth appears again in spring.
- Position: full sun
- Soil: moderately fertile, moist but well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: May to August
- Hardiness: fully hardy
Selected by the renowned Dutch plantsman Piet Oudolf as one of his favourites, this is a cracking plant. The softly hairy leaves are quite a dark green, while the upright, branching flowerspikes, carry reddish-purple stems and flowers throughout summer - the combination of which creates a rich hue that is perfect for 'bruised' colour schemes. This spreading plant is easy to grow and tolerant of a wide range of soils, but prefers a spot in full sun.
- Garden care: To prolong flowering remove the flower spikes as soon they start to fade. Apply a generous 5-7cm (2-3in) mulch of well-rotted garden compost or manure around the base of the plant in spring. Avoid excessive winter wet, and deadhead after flowering if you want to prevent it self-seeding.