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Perennials

AGAPANTHUS WITH A TWIST

Queen Mum™ Agapanthus Flowers
In April I was lurking around at a garden center looking for some inspirational plants. I saw this plant without realizing it was an Agapanthus at all.

Actually, on sight, I thought it was a Clivia (Bush Lily) because of the thick, vigorously dark green foliage. And the plant had no flowers at that time. When I read the label, I realized that it was a Lily Of The Nile (agapanthus). Together with some other plants, it went with me home to my garden in Cypress.

I am a notorious sucker for buying plants on impulse.

While I can wonder, wait and linger for months to buy a shirt or a pair of shoes, and I am honestly into my third year searching for a perfect and practical handbag, I can purchase a plant I know nothing about without blinking twice. It is a very doubtful character trait for a grown woman. It’s almost like adopting all homeless dogs you hear about and see around (which my family is continuously dread that I would do). Or like buying a car after what color they have (will- NEVER- do- that).

I have finally realized that even though I decide quickly and it seems like I solely trust my emotions, the unconscious part of my brain probably consider the plant based on the experience of a life among  all kinds of plants. The Queen Mum Agapanthus with its rugged, beautiful and healthy foliage was an easy choice. It wasn’t a completely brainless decision. (I will come back to plant buys who clearly was).

The Queen Mum Agapanthus was also a part of the Southern Living Collection.

Since I still reckon myself to be a novice on subtropical gardening, I have used both their plants and their website to enlighten myself countless times. I also consider the Grumpy Gardener as one of the very, very, rare garden writers who has self-irony and punch in his writing. It’s nice to hear that I am not the only one to do mistakes in your garden you can laugh about. At least after som time.

In my garden, the Queen Mum Agapanthus are facing directly southward, yet sheltered from the strongest afternoon sun. In addition to that, it receives regular watering via the sprinkler, I will still water the plant manually in July and August sometimes. I lost an agapanthus plant last summer because I assumed that it would have sufficient roots to take the heat.

According to what I have read about the Queen Mum Agapanthus, it’s originally from Australia and it should be hardier than most of the agapanthuses on the marked. The bicolour flower bells make it a good choice if you need a hardy and low maintenance accent plant.

Agapanthus

DESCRIPTION Mostly evergreen perennial with leathery, dark green glossy leaves, large heads of blue, bluish, white and whitish big ball-shaped flower heads.
HARDINESS USDA 7b-11, depends also on local climate variations.
GROWING LOCATION Sun or partial shade, Low maintenance and drought tolerant while established. Remember to mulch around the plant to stabilize the growth conditions.
PRUNING AND CARE Will benefit from dividing after some years. Feeding in spring with some all purpose plant food. Remove withered flower heads so the plant saves nutrients and to avoid self-seeding for some of the more vigorously species.
DISEASES Generally trouble free and drought tolerant while established. Be aware of snails and Lily beetles
SUITABLE FOR They are ideal plants for large pots on terraces and patios. Flowering in May and June. Very suitable for mass plantings.

 

Queen Mum™ Agapanthus planted together with Elephant Ear, Colocasia esculenta "white Lava"

Queen Mum™ Agapanthus planted together with Elephant Ear, Colocasia esculenta “white Lava” facing south.

I planted the Queen Mum™ Agapanthus planted between some of my favorite plants. the Bamboo (Bambusa vulgaris "Wamin" and with the Elephant Ear, Colocasia esculenta "white Lava"

I planted the Queen Mum™ Agapanthus between two of my favorite plants. The Bamboo (Bambusa vulgaris “Wamin” and the Elephant Ear, Colocasia esculenta “white Lava”

Agapanthus Lily-of-the-Nile

This is how the more Common Lily-of-the-Nile looks. Just as you know.

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