Anemone - Garden Basics - Flower - Bulb

(Anemone blanda)

Anemone (sometimes called windflowers) are small, daisy-like flowers that among the earliest to bloom. Their strong, clear colors are a main attraction. They grow only 4-6 inches tall and produce a carpet of blooms when planted in mass. Plant them under shrubs, at the edge of woodland areas, and in rock gardens and mixed borders. Anemone makes a great little companion to plant around larger bulbs. The blooms, which appear in early spring, close up at night and in inclement weather, and the foliage is fernlike.

Two favorite anemones are Blue Shades and White Splendor. Blue Shades blossoms range in color from pale to dark blue, and have yellow centers. They are great for naturalizing, forcing and rock gardens. White Splendor produces taller, wider mounds with more flowers. They are a great complement to other spring bulbs.

To seed, simply leave the faded flowers on the stem to allow them to propagate themselves, or divide the roots in spring or fall. Seeds require about 18 months to reach flowering size. In cold climates, dig up the rhizomes after the plants fade. Allow them to dry in the shade, then dust them off and store in an old stocking or net in a dry, airy place. They keep well and can be planted again next year.

They will do well in zones 3-8. Anemone are not suitable for tropical climates.

Planting Guide

  • Plant the rhizomes in spring or fall where they will receive partial shade. They prefer a slightly acid soil (pH 6-7.)
  • Soak in water 48 hours before planting.
  • Soil should be well drained. Add peat moss if necessary.
  • Plant 1-2 inches deep, 4-6 inches apart.
  • Water thoroughly after planting, then do not water again until shoots appear.
  • The rhizomes are susceptible to invasion by mice and squirrels. You can protect them by layering chicken wire over the ground after planting.
  • Apply leaf mold or bone meal when they begin to grow.
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