Echinops Ritro. Blooming in late summer, spiky globes of electric blue flowers sit on silvery green tems, giving great structural impact to sunny cottage garden borders and warm gravel gardens. Creates a fabulous contrast with other border perennials.
February – March or August – November
How to Sow
Sow seed indoors, 2mm (1/16in) deep in a deep seed tray or pot of moist, well-drained seed compost. Seed should be sowed 30mm (1in) apart as seedlings need plenty of space. Transplant seedlings when large enough to handle to 8cm (3in) pots and grow on. Spring sowings can be planted out after all risk of frost has passed. Autumn sowings should be grown on for a year before planting out with 50cm (20in) spacing. Feed and water regularly until plants are fully established. Will seed freely and the ornamental seed heads will provide further late summer interest if left intact. If seedlings are not required, simply deadhead the faded flowers.
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