Thanks are due to Laura who gave me this beautiful shrub as a small cutting a few years ago. I was already growing A x suntense which has stunning deep bluey purple flowers, but its season is fleeting, whereas ‘Veronica Tennant’ is in bloom from late spring well into the summer.
This is a strong growing, upright shrub, much hardier than people might think (quite untouched by the recent -2’ here). The dainty saucer shaped flowers are a good eight centimetres across and bees love them!
Abutilon must have full sun, good drainage and a sheltered spot and given those conditions, they won’t look back. Now this leads neatly on to the subject of pruning and of eventual height.
The general consensus is that Abutilon respond well to hard pruning, which is just as well as I like to keep it within bounds; but I have always pruned after flowering whereas I see I should be doing it in early spring … so take your pick! ‘Veronica Tennant’ is said to reach four metres but mine never has the chance to get beyond head height.
Photograph: Abutilon vitifolium ‘Veronica Tennant’ with Ceanothus ‘Concha’.