Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Macleaya - Plume Poppy

A genus of 2 very similar, very rapid spreading, very tall perennials native to the Orient that are good for the backs of large borders and specimen plantings only, because of their size ( up to 10 x 8 feet ) and potentially invasive rhizomes.
Some plants have been known to eventually spread to cover an acre.
Used in the right setting; the Plume Poppies are SPECTACULAR!!!
The handsome, deeply 5 or 7 lobed, rounded leaves are very large, to 20 inches wide. The handsome foliage is blue-green above and whitish downy beneath.
The creamy-white flowers are borne on plume like panicles up to 3 feet long, during mid to late summer.
Hardy zones 2 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on moist, deep, fertile, well drained soil. Install new plants during autumn or early spring only. Pest and disease problems are very rare, if slugs do occur treat by spreading diatomacous earth on the soil around the plant. Propagation is from seed or division while dormant. Deadhead old flower stems, cut plants down to close to groundlevel during late autumn.

Macleaya cordata
Native to eastern China and Japan. White flowers from July to September.

* photos taken on May 16 2010 @ Cylburn Arboretum, Baltimore, MD

* photos taken on Jul 31 in Hyde Park, NY

* photos taken on July 1 2015 in Columbia, MD

Macleaya microcarpa
Native to central China. Even faster growing than the similar Macleaya cordata, with pink flowers from July to August.
'Kelway's Coral Plume'
Slightly bluer foliage and inntense pink flowers.

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