FLOWER SPRAYS

Epimedium arches begin high over the plant, and then they start to bend towards the leaves as more flowers unfurl on the spray. The genus is known for its abundant numbers of sprays in a mature garden.

  • E Amber Queen (13)
  • E Lilafee 55
  • E Niveum 4
  • E Orange Queen 21
  • E Pink Champagne 1
  • EPI Pink Elf 0009
  • E Sulphureum 61
  • E warleyense 10
  • 'Amber Queen' Long spikes of large yellow/amber flowers suspended on black stems appear almost to float above the speckled foliage.
  • 'Lilafee' True purple flowers traced in white appear over a small plant in spring. This first flush is further complemented by dark purple foliage.
  • 'Niveum' Delicate, porcelain-white flowers on our smallest Epimedium. An excellent choice for miniature gardens or anywhere it can be seen up close.
  • 'Orange Queen' A “clover-shaped” flower in shades of yellow and peach with red-orange accents. A medium sized plant with green heart-shaped leaves and light markings.
  • 'Pink Champagne' Heavy sprays of large bi-color pink flowers over an equally large plant. Speckled foliage in spring.
  • 'Pink Elf' Airy spikes of tiny flowers appear in masses of coppery-pink. Long, slender leaves emerge light chocolate on a large and vigorous plant.
  • 'Sulphureum' In spring buttercup yellow blooms like tiny daffodils in a spray over foliage stained a vivid red. A low and long-lived yellow standard.
  • warleyense An excellent medium-sized species, it has intensely orange flowers that contrast perfectly with its deep green leaves.

EPIMEDIUM GOING MAINSTREAM

American households are moving towards Epimediums for a reason. Epimediums typically provide the perfect low, slow-spreading foliage plant for shady areas. They bloom en masse in spring with sprays of small uniquely-shaped flowers in a wide variety of colors. The heart-shaped foliage often emerges with attractive patterns of bright red or deep purple, turning green for the summer.

Their ideal conditions are evenly moist, well drained soils in an area with dappled sun. But they are tough enough to take part sun, deep dry shade, and a variety of less than ideal soil conditions without hurting their aesthetic, only slowing their spread.

Nearly immortal once established, they can be kept in clumps or allowed to slowly expand, allowing a groundcover that can form mats of foliage without any of the aggressive tendencies of most spreading plants.

New breeding is producing a lot more drama in this genus. A visit to the French breeder, Thierry Delabroye, showed us the future of Epimedium breeding. We should see even bigger plants with large flowers on long sprays and new ranges of color and form for both flower and foliage.

No longer content being put in a shady corner these new Epimediums stand up and demand to be noticed!

Interestingly, the common name, horny goat weed, refers to the same active ingredient as in male “enhancement” suppliments.