Rose Campion & Spanish Lavender combinationRose campion provides a long season backdrop for many plants and Spanish lavender is one of the most striking. Both plants have attractive silver gray foliage all season into winter but make their biggest impact in the garden when they burst into bloom in spring. The bright purple flowers of Spanish lavender create a vivid color combination with the magenta flowers of rose campion that appear at the same time. By deadheading rose campion, its flowering can be extended to much of the summer. And when the flowers are gone Spanish lavender is a handsome plant with fine foliage that provides a pleasant contrast in texture to rose campion’s coarser woolly leaves.  Grow in full sun, average to lean, medium moist, well-drained soil.

Rose Campion (Lychnis coronaria)lychnis_coronaria_0Rose campion is a clump forming biennial or short lived perennial that naturalizes easily by self-seeding. The woolly leaves are up to three inches long and form a basal rosette which is attractive as a ground cover before and after the blooms appear. The one inch wide flowers have five petals and are carried high on gray green fuzzy stems bearing relatively small leaves. Several cultivars are available varying is color from white to dark crimson and include bi-tones.

Bloom Time: Late spring to early summer
Size: 2-3’ H x 1-1.5” W
Hardiness: Zones 4-8

Spanish Lavender (Lavendula stoechas)Lavender SpanishAlso called French lavender, this native of Mediteraean Europe and North Africa has fine evergreen aromatic foliage that remains attractive all year long. Although less hardy than English lavender it is more suitable for hot humid areas. It has very unique flower heads consisting of a dense spike of dark purple flowers two inches long with two or more upright bright lavender purple sterile bracts that give the flower the appearance of a rabbit. By pruning Spanish lavender after flowering a dense attractive habit can be maintained. Although of great culinary interest Spanish lavender is used for its scent.

Bloom Time: Late spring to early summer
Size: 1-3’ H x 1-3’ W
Hardiness: Zones 7-9.

Plant combinations pointer

By Karen