Gentiana scabra, or Japanese gentian, is a low-growing, evergreen perennial flower that is hardy in zones 3 to 8. The flowers are bell-shaped and a rich, sapphire blue. These plants are excellent choices for rock gardens, along shady garden paths or in woodland settings. They prefer mostly shady areas, but will tolerate dappled light if planted underneath leafy trees.
Choose a site with moist soil and part to mostly shade. Dig a hole to accommodate your gentian plant. If you're planting in groups, space the plants about 12 inches apart.
Add peat moss or other organic matter to the soil in the hole and mix together. The mixture should be one part peat moss to two parts soil.
Place the gentian in the hole, backfill with soil and compact it to remove any air pockets. Water thoroughly.
Water regularly to keep the soil moist but don't allow it to become waterlogged, as this will result in root rot.
To thin out overgrown clumps, dividing can be done in the spring simply by digging up the extra plants and replanting them in another moist, shady location.
Things You Will Need
- Peat moss