Great Plants this Month Autumn

Gomphostigma virgatum

Louse Sims

At first glance, this elegant, upright, small shrub looks as if it would revel in a dry sunny spot, much where you would expect to grow lavender and rosemary. You would imagine that its silver grey leaves and tiny white flowers would sit happily in a typical Mediterranean habitat. Well, it didn’t take long to discover that this plant originates in southern Africa … and guess what? It mostly grows along river banks and watercourses!

I raised my plants from seed and planted them out the following spring. I am ashamed to admit that, at the time, I didn’t look into their preferred environment and assumed they’d like it sunny and well drained. As it turns out, they seem to like that too!

Gomphostigma virgatum

I imagine that given the hot sun and damp, if not waterlogged, soil that they get in southern Africa, they would attain the 2.6 metres quoted on the Plantz Africa website; however mine have barely reached one metre after three years. 

NB Louise has published a beautifully produced book of her plant profiles – A Plant for Each Week of the Year. It costs £9.99 and is for sale in our online shop here.

More NB If you’re not already a subscriber and you’d like a bit more gardening chitchat from the3growbags, please type your email address here and we’ll send you a new post every Saturday morning.

By the3growbags

We're three sisters who love gardening, plants and even the science of horticulture but we're not all experts. We'd love everyone even remotely interested in their gardens to be part of our blogsite.

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