TOWER OF JEWELS
The most sought after and dramatic of all, spectacular Echium wildpretii is a prized garden jewel.
Huge, slender cones of flowers tower up during spring and summer, reaching for the sky above low rosettes of silvery, furry foliage.
Each of these flower towers is made up made up of 100’s of small, dusky-rose blooms.
With each tiny bloom flaunting stamens loaded with bright blue pollen.
Bees, butterflies, and honey eating birds simply go mad for it.
Found on the volcanic slopes of the Canary Islands, this rare plant produces very few viable seeds. Because this seed has been collected from plants near to other Echium hybrids, there may be some variation in the colours of seedlings produced. Bringing even more joy and bragging rights.
An exposed, windy, sun-baked, seaside native habitat, makes Echium wildpretii an exceptionally hardy and easy garden plant.
So do not overpamper your Tower of Jewels with rich feed or excessive watering.
It is of course perfect for gardeners near the sea or in hotter, drier areas.
And these soaring spires have stout, strong stems, so they are self supporting and unlikely to need extra staking.
Echium wildpretii is a biennial / triennial and flowers in it’s 2nd to 3rd year (24 months after sowing).
But it is very much worth the wait.
And once you have your own Tower of Jewels, it reliably self-seeds babies into the garden for you, or you can save seed from dried flower stems. You just need a starter plant for successive generations.
Echium wildpretii enjoys basking in Full Sun.
It thrives in well drained, dryish soil, sandy or rocky sites.
Moderately frost hardy, though may need some protection from nearby trees or shed in very frosty inland areas.
Echium wildpretii is well worth the wait.
But be sure to allow some spent flower towers to dry, so seeds can drop nearby for more plants next year, and you can gather some seed to share with friends.
Spectacular 1.25m H (minimum) x silvery rosette 45cm W.
SEED SOWING ADVICE: QUICK & EASY
Echium seeds are best sown in spring, to enable a full season of growth ready for flowers the following year.
Seeds can be sown directly into the garden where they are needed, preferably in well drained, sunny spot / or you can sow in pots indoors.
Sow seeds in good quality seed raising mix and cover thinly with mix.
Place in good light in a frost free area. No artificial heat is necessary.
Seedlings appear in 4-6 weeks.
Pot on into well draining gritty soil to grow on before planting out in a sunny spot in the garden. Plants usually flower 24 months after sowing.
SEED COUNT: 10 per pack approx.