Hardy Herbaceous Perennials
HARDY HERBACEOUS PERENNIALS. This term includes not only those fibrous-rooted plants of herbaceous habit which spring up from the root year after year, but also those old-fashioned subjects known as florists' flowers, and the hardy bulbs. Some of the most beautiful of hardy flowering plants belong to this class. When the length of the flowering season is considered, it will be obvious that it is impossible to keep up the show of a single border or plot for six months together, since plants, as they are commonly arranged, come dropping into and out of flower one after another; and even where a certain number are in bloom at the same time, they necessarily stand apart, and so the effects of contrast, which can be perceived only among adjacent objects, are lost. To obviate this defect, it has been recommended that ornamental plants should be formed into four or five separate suites of flowering, to be distributed over the garden. Not to mention the more vernal flowers, the first might contain the flora of May; the second that of June; the third that of July; and the fourth that of August and the following months. These compartments should be so intermingled that no particular class may be entirely absent from any one quarter of the garden.
Before beginning to plant, it would be well to construct tables or lists of the plants, specifying their respective times of flowering, colours and heights. To diversify properly and mingle well together the reds, whites, purples, yellows and blues, with all their intervening shades, requires considerable taste and powers of combination; and ascertained failures may be rectified at the proper time the next season. The one great object aimed at should be to present an agreeable contrast a floral picture; and, as at particular seasons a monotony of tint prevails, it is useful at such times to be in possession of some strong glaring colours. White, for instance, should be much employed in July, to break the duller blues and purples which then preponderate. Orange, too, is very effective at this season. On the other hand, yellows are superabundant in autumn, and therefore reds and blues should then be sought for. The flower-gardener should have a small nursery, or reserve garden, for the propagation of the finer plants, to be transferred into the borders as often as is required.
As a rule, all the fibrous-rooted herbaceous plants flourish in good soil which has been fairly enriched wfth manure, that of a loamy character being the most suitable. Many of them also grow satisfactorily in a peaty soil if well worked, especially if they have a cool moist subsoil. Pentstemons and phloxes, amongst others, succeed well in soil of this character, but the surface must be well drained ; the former are rather apt to perish in winter in loamy soil, if at all closeand heavy. The herbaceous border should be a distinct compartment varying from 6 to 10 ft. in width, and perhaps backed up by evergreens under certain conditions. Such a border will take in about four lines of plants, the tallest being placed in groups at the back and in the centre, and the others graduated in height down to the front. In the front row patches of the white arabis, the yellow alyssum, white, yellow, blue, or purple violas, and the purple aubrietia, recurring at intervals of S or 6 yards on a border of considerable length, carry the eye forwards and give a balanced kind of finish to the whole. The same might be done with dianthuses or the larger narcissi in the second row, with paeonies, columbines and phloxes in the third, and with delphiniums, aconitums and some of the taller yellow composites as helianthus and rudbeckia at the back. Spring and autumn flowers, as well as those blooming in summer, should be regularly distributed throughout the border, which will then at no season be devoid of interest in any part. Many of the little alpines may be brought into the front line planted between suitable pieces of stone, or they may be relegated to a particular spot, and placed on an artificial rockery. Most of the hardy bulbs will do well enough in the border, care being taken not to disturb them while leafless and dormant.
Some deep-rooting perennials do not spread much at the surface, and only require refreshing from time to time by top-dressings. Others, as the asters, spread rapidly; those possessing this habit should be taken up every second or third year, and, a nice patch being selected for replanting from the outer portions, the rest may be either thrown aside, or reserved for increase; the portion selected for replanting should be returned to its place, the ground having meanwhile been well broken up. Some plants are apt to decay at the base, frequently from exposure caused by the lifting process going on during their growth; these should be taken up annually in early autumn, the soil refreshed, and the plants returned to their places, care being taken to plant them sufficiently deep.
Only a section of some of the best of the decorative hardy perennials can be noted, before we pass on to those popular subjects of this class which have been directly influenced by the hybridizer and improver. Many more might be added to the subjoined list :
Acaena. Neat trailing plants adapted for rockwork, thriving in sandy soil. A. microphylla and A. myriophylla have pretty spiny heads of flowers.
Acantholimon. Pretty dwarf tufted plants, with needle-shaped leaves, adapted for rockwork. A. glumaceum and A. venustum bear bright pink flowers in July and August. Light sandy loam.
Acanthus. Bold handsome plants, with stately spikes, 2 to 3 ft. high, of flowers with spiny bracts. A. mollis, A. latifolius, and A. longifolius are broad-leaved sorts; A. spinosus and A. spinosissimus have narrower spiny toothed leaves.
Achillea. Handsome composite plants, the stronger ones of easy culture in common soil. A. Eupatorium and filipendula, 3 to 4 ft., have showy yellow corymbose flowers; A. rosea, 2 ft., rosy-crimson; and A. Ptarmica flore-pleno, 2 ft., double white flowers. Others suitable for front lines or rockwork are A. tomentosa, q in., bright yellow; A. aegyptiaca, I ft., silvery leaves and yellow flowers; A. umbellata, 8 in., silvery leaves and white flowers; and A. Clavenruu., 6 in., with silvery leaves and pure white flowers.
Aconitum. Handsome border plants, the tall stems crowned by racemes of showy hooded flowers. A. Camarum, 3 to 4 ft., has deep purple flowers in August; A. sinense, ij to 2 ft., has large dark purple flowers in September; A. variegatum, 3 ft., has the flowers white edged with blue; A. autumnale, 3 ft., has pale blue flowers; A. Anthora, I to 2 ft., yellow; and A. japonicum, 2% ft., deep blue flowers, produced in September and October. A. Wilsoni, a new species from China, 6 ft high, with bluish-purple flowers.
Adenophora. Bell-shaped flowers. A. slylosa, 2 ft., pale blue, elegant; A. denticulata, Ij ft., dark blue; and in A. liliifolia, l^ ft., pale blue, sweet-scented all blooming during summer. Light soil.
Adonis. A. vernalis, I ft., has large bright yellow stellate flowers in April. Deep light soil. A. amurensis is a fine Chinese species.
Ajuga. Free growing, dwarf and showy. A. reptans, 8 in., has creeping runners, which A. genevensis has not; both bear handsome spikes of blue labiate flowers. Ordinary soil.
Allium. Hardy bulbs of the garlic family, some species of which are ornamental; the inflorescence is umbellate. In A. azureum, i to 2 ft., the flowers are deep-blue; in A. Moly, I ft., golden yellow; in A. neapolitanum, ij ft., white, very handsome; in A. triquetrum, 8 in., white with green central stripes; in A. pedemontanum, 9 in., reddish- violet, very beautiful, the umbels nodding.
Alstroemeria. Beautiful plants with fleshy tuberous roots, which are the better if not often disturbed. A. aurantiaca, 2 to 3 ft., orange streaked with red, in July and August; A. chilensis, 2 to 3 ft., blood-red, streaked with yellow, affording many varieties. Deep sandy loam or peat. Should be planted at least 6 or 8 in. deep.
Althaea rosea. The hollyhock is a noble perennial, 6 to 15 ft. high, with flowers of every colour except blue. Requires rich loamy soil and plenty of space.
Alyssum. Showy rockwork or front row border plants of easy culture in any light soil; the plants should be frequently renewed from cuttings'. A. saxatile, with greyish leaves, and deep yellow flowers, produced in April and May, and the dwarfer A. montanum are useful.
Amaryllis. Noble half-hardy bulbs, for planting near the front wall of a hothouse or greenhouse; the soil must be deep, rich and well drained. A. Belladonna, the Belladonna Lily, 3 ft., has large funnel-shaped flowers in September, of a delicate rose colour. The variety A. blanda has paler flowers, almost white.
Anchusa. Pretty boraginaceous herbs, easily grown. A. italica, 3 to 4 ft., has blue star-like flowers. A. sempervirens, i$ ft., rich blue, is well suited for rough borders.
Androsace. Pretty dwarf rock plants, requiring rather careful management and a gritty soil. A. Vitaliana, yellow; A. Wulfeniana, purplish-crimson; A. tillosa, white or pale rose; A. lactea, white with yellow eye; A. lanuginosa, delicate rose; and A. Chamaejasme, delicate rose, are some of the best.
Anemone. The Japanese kinds, A. japonica, flowers white and purple, are very easily grown and are particularly fine in autumn. The scarlet A. fulgens, and A. coronaria, the poppy anemone, are useful for the front, or in nooks in the rockery; while the common hepatica (A. hepalica) with its bright blue flowers should also have a place.
Antennaria. Composite plants, with everlasting flowers. A. margaritacea, ij to 2 ft., has white woolly stems and leaves, and white flower-heads.
Anthericum. Charming border flowers. A. Liliastrum, St Bruno's Lily, ij ft., bears pretty white sweet-scented flowers in May; A. Hookeri (Chrysobactron), 2 ft., with long racemes of bright golden yellow flowers, requires cool peaty soil.
Aquilegia. The Columbine family, consisting of beautiful border flowers in great variety, ranging from I to 2 or 3 ft. in height. Besides the common purple A. vulgaris with its numerous varieties, double and single, there are of choice sorts A. alpina and A. pyrenaica, blue; A. glandulosa, A. jucunda, and A. coerulea, blue and white; A. leptoceras, blue and yellow; A. canadensis, A. Skinneri, and A. iruncata (calif arnica), scarlet and yellow; A. chrysantha, yellow; and A. fragrans, white or flesh-colour, very fragrant. Light rich garden soil.
Arabis. Dwarf close-growing evergreen cruciferous plants, adapted for rockwork and the front part of the flower border, and of the easiest culture. A. albida forms a conspicuous mass of greyish leaves and white blossoms. There is also a charming double variety. A. lucida, which is also white-flowered, bears its bright green leaves in rosettes, and has a variety with prettily gold-margined leaves.
Arenaria Evergreen rock plants of easy culture. A. graminifolia and A. laricifolia are tufted, with grassy foliage and white flowers, while A. balearica, a creeping rock plant, has tiny leaves and solitary white flowers.
Armeria. The Thrift or Sea-Pink, of which the common form A. maritima is sometimes planted as an edging for garden walks; there are three varieties, the common pale pink, the deep rose, and the white, the last two being the most desirable. A. cephalotes, ij ft., is a larger plant, with tufts of linear lance -shaped leaves, and abundant globular heads of deep rose flowers, in June and July.
Asclepias. A. tuberosa is a handsome fleshy-rooted plant, very impatient of being disturbed, and preferring good peat soil; it grows I to i J ft. high, and bears corymbs of deep yellow and orange flowers in September. A. incarnata, 2 to 4 ft., produces deep rose sweet-scented flowers towards the end of summer.
Asperula odorata. The woodruff, a charming white-flowered plant with leaves in circles. Well adapted for carpeting the border or rockery.
Asphodelus. Handsome liliaceous plants, with fleshy roots, erect stems, and showy flowers, thriving in any good garden soil. A. albus, 4 ft., A. aestivus, 4 ft., and A. ramosus, 4 ft., have all long tapering keeled leaves, and simple or branched spikes of white flowers; A. luteus, 2 ft., has awl-shaped leaves and dense spikes of fragrant yellow flowers; A. capillaris is similar to A. luteus, but more slender and elegant.
Aster. A very large family of autumn-blooming composites, including some ornamental species, all of the easiest culture. Of these, A. alpinus, I ft., and A. Amellus, ij ft., with its yar. bessarabicus, have broadish blunt leaves, and large starry bluish flowers; A. longifolius Jormosus, 2 ft., bright rosy lilac; A. elegans, 3 to 5 ft., small pale purple or whitish; A. laxus, 2 ft., purplish-blue; A. pendulus, 2j ft., white, changing to rose; A. pyrenaeus, 2 to 3 ft., lilac-blue; A. turbinellus, 2 to 3 ft., mauve-coloured, are showy border plants; and A. Novae Angliae, 5 to 6 ft., rosy- violet; A. cyaneus, 5 ft., blue-lilac; and A. grandiflorus, 3 ft., violet, are especially useful from their late-flowering habit.
Astilbe. A. japonica, I to ij ft., better known as Hoteia japonica or Spiraea japonica, thrives in peaty or sandy soil ; its glossy tripinnate leaves, and feathery panicles of white flowers early in summer, are very attractive. It proves to be a fine decorative potplant, and invaluable for forcing during the spring.
Astragalus. Showy pea -flowered plants, the smaller species adapted for rockwork; sandy soil. A. dasyglottis, 6 in., has bluishpurple flowers in August and September; and A. monspessulanus, 8 in., crimson-purple in July; while A. hypoglottis, 6 in., produces in summer compact heads of pretty flowers, which are either purple or white. There are many very ornamental kinds.
Aubrietia. Beautiful dwarf spring-blooming rock plants, forming carpety tufts of flowers of simple cruciferous form. A. delioidea is of a deep lilac-blue; A. Campbelliae is more compact and rather darker, approaching to purple; A. grandiflora and graeca are rather larger, but of a lighter hue. Light sandy soil.
Bambusa. The bamboo family are elegant arborescent grasses (see BAMBOO).
Baplisia. Stoutish erect-growing, 2 to 3 ft., with smooth foliage and spikes of pea-like flowers. B. australis is purplish-blue, B. alba, white, B. exaltata, deep blue; all flowering in the summer months.
Bellis. B. perennis flore-pleno, the Double Daisy, consists of dwarf showy plants 3 to 4 in. high, flowering freely in spring if grown in rich light soil, and frequently divided and transplanted. The white and pink forms, with the white and red quilled, and the vanegated-leaved aucubaefolia, are some of the best.
Bocconia. Stately poppyworts, 6 to 8 ft. B. cordata has heartshaped lobed leaves, and large panicles of small flesh-coloured flowers. Sometimes called Macleaya. Deep sandy loam.
Brodiaea. Pretty bulbous plants. B. grandiflora, I ft., has large bluish-purple flowers; B. coccinea, 2 to 3 ft., has tubular campanulate nodding flowers of a rich crimson with green tips. Sandy loam.
Bulbocodium. Pretty spring-flowering crocus-like bulbs. B. vernum, 4 to 6 in. high, purplish-lilac, blooms in March. Good garden soil.
Buphthalmum. Robust composite herbs with striking foliage, for the back of herbaceous or shrubbery borders. B. cordifolium, 4 ft., has large cordate leaves, and heads of rich orange flowers in cymose panicles in July. Also called Telekia speciosa.
Calandrinia. Showy dwarf plants for sunny rockwork, in light sandy soil. C. umbeUata, 3 to 4 in., much branched, with narrow hairy leaves, and corymbs of magenta-crimson flowers in the summer months.
Calochortus. Beautiful bulbous plants, called mariposa lilies, requiring warm sheltered spots in rich gritty and well-drained soil. There are several species known, the best being albus, elegans, luteus, Plummerae, splendens, Purdyi, venustus and Weedi.
Caltha. Showy marsh plants, adapted for the margins of lakes, streamlets or artificial bogs. C. palustris flore-pleno, I ft., has double brilliant yellow flowers in May.
Calystegia. Twining plants with running perennial roots. C. pubescens flore-pleno, 8 to 10 ft., has showy double-pink convolvuloid flowers in July; C. dahurica is a handsome single-flowered summerblooming kind, with rosy-coloured flowers.
Camassia esculenta. A beautiful bulbous plant 2 to 3 ft. high with large pale blue flowers. Also a white variety.
Campanula. Beautiful, as well as varied in habit and character. They are called bell-flowers. C. pulla, 6 in., purplish, nodding, on slender erect stalks; C. turbinata, 9 in., purple, broad-belled; C. carpatica, I ft., blue, broad-belled; C. nobilis, ij ft., long-belled, whitish or tinted with chocolate; C. persicifolia, 2 ft., a fine border plant, single or double, white or purple, blooming in July; and C. pyramidalis, 6 ft., blue or white, in tall branching spikes, are good and diverse. There are many other fine sorts.
Centaurea. Bold-habited composites of showy character; common soil. C. babylonica, 5 to 7 ft., has winged stems, silvery leaves, and yellow flower-heads from June to September; C. montana, 3 ft., deep bright blue or white.
Centranthus, Showy free-flowering plants, for rockwork, banks, or stony soil. C. ruber, 2 ft., branches and blooms freely all summer, and varies with rosy, or crimson, or white flowers. It clothes the chalk cuttings on some English railways with a sheet of colour in the blooming season.
Cheiranthus. Pretty rock plants, for light stony soils. C. alpinus, 6 in., grows in dense tufts, and bears sulphur-yellow flowers in May. C. ochroleucus is similar in character.
Chionodoxa. Charming dwarf hardy bulbous plants of the liliaceous order, blooming in the early spring in company with Scilla sibirica, and of equally easy cultivation. C. Luciliae, 6 in., has starshaped flowers of a brilliant blue with a white centre. C. gigantea is the finest of the few known species. It blooms from February to April.
Chrysanthemum. Apart from the florist's varieties of C. indicum there are a few fine natural species. One of the best for the flower border is C. maximum and its varieties all with beautiful white flowers having yellow centres. C. latifolium is also a fine species.
Colchicum. Showy autumn-blooming bulbs (corms), with crocuslike flowers, all rosy-purple or white. C. speciosum, C. autumnale, single and double, C. byzantinum, and C. variegatum are all worth growing.
Convallaria. C. majalis, the lily of the valley, a well-known sweet-scented favourite spring flower, growing freely in rich garden soil; its spikes, 6 to q in. high, of pretty white fragrant bells, are produced in May and June. Requires shady places, and plenty of old manure each autumn.
Coreopsis. Effective composite plants, thriving in good garden soil. C. auriculata, 2 to 3 ft., has yellow and brown flowers in July and August; C. lanceolata, 2 to 3 ft., bright yellow, in August; next to the biennial C. grandiflora it is the best garden plant.
Corydalis. Interesting and elegant plants, mostly tuberous, growing in good garden soil. C. bracteata, 9 in., has sulphur-coloured flowers in April, and C. nobilis, I ft., rich yellow, in May; C. solida, with purplish, and C. tuberosa, with white flowers, are pretty springflowering plants, 4 to 6 in. high. C. thalictrifolia, I ft., yellow, May to October.
Cyclamen. Charming tuberous-rooted plants of dwarf habit, suitable for sheltered rockeries, and growing in light gritty soil. C. europaeum, reddish-purple, flowers in summer, and C. hederaefolium in autumn.
Cypripedium. Beautiful terrestrial orchids, requiring to be planted in peat soil, in a cool and rather shady situation. C. spectabile, 1$ to 2 ft., white and rose colour, in June, is a lovely species, as is C. Calceolus, I ft., yellow and brown, in May; all are full of interest and beauty.
Delphinium. The Larkspur family, tall showy plants, with spikes of blue flowers in July. Distinct sorts are D. grandiflorum and D. grandiflorum flore-pleno, 2 to 3 ft., of the richest dazzling blue, flowering on till September; D. chinense, 2 ft., blue, and its doubleflowered variety, are good, as is D. Barlowi, 3 ft., a brilliant double xiu. 25 blue-purple. D. nudicaule, 2 ft., orange-scarlet, very showy, is best treated as a biennial, its brilliant flowers being produced freely in the second year from the seed.
Dianthus. Chiefly rock plants with handsome and fragrant flowers, the smaller sorts growing in light sandy soil, and the larger border plants in rich garden earth. Of the dwarfer sorts for rock gardens, D. alpinus; D. caesius, D. deltoides, D. dentosus, D. neglectus, D. petraeus, and D. glacialis are good examples; while for borders or larger rockwork D. plumarius, D. superbus, D. Fischeri, D. cruentus, and the clove section of D. Caryophyllus are most desirable.
Dicentra.Very elegant plants, of easy growth in good soil. D. spectabilis, 2 to 3 ft., has paeony-like foliage, and gracefully drooping spikes of heart-shaped pink flowers, about May, but it should have a sheltered place, as it suffers from spring frosts and winds; D. formosa and D. eximia, I ft., are also pretty rosy-flowered species.
Dictamnus. D. Fraxinella is a very characteristic and attractive plant, 2 to 3 ft., with bold pinnate leaves, and tall racemes of irregular-shaped purple or white flowers. It is everywhere glandular, and strongly scented.
Digitalis. Stately erect-growing plants, with long racemes of pouch-shaped drooping flowers. The native D. purpurea, or foxglove, 3 to 5 ft., with its dense racemes of purple flowers, spotted inside, is very showy, but is surpassed by the garden varieties that have been raised. It is really a biennial, but grows itself so freely as to become perennial in the garden. An erect flowered form is called gloxinioides. The yellow-flowered D. lutea and D. grandiflora are less showy. Good garden soil, and frequent renewal from seeds.
Doronifum. Showy composites of free growth in ordinary soil. D. caucasicum and D. austriacum, I to i ft., both yellow-flowered, bloom in spring and early summer. D. plantagineum excelsum, 3 to 5 ft. high, is the best garden plant.
Draba. Good rockwork cruciferous plants. D. alpina, D. aizoides, D. ciliaris, D. Aizoon, and D. cuspidata bear yellow flowers in early spring; D. cinerea and D. ciliata have white flowers. Gritty welldrained soil.
Dracocephalum. Handsome labiate plants, requiring a warm and well-drained soil. D. argunense, ij ft., D. austriacum, I ft., D. grandiflorum, I ft., and D. Ruyschianum, ij ft., with its var. japonicum, all produce showy blue flowers during the summer months.
Echinacea. Stout growing showy composites for late summer and autumn flowering, requiring rich deep soil, and not to be often disturbed. E. angustifolia, 3 to 4 ft., light purplish-rose, and E. intermedia, 3 to 4 ft., reddish-purple, are desirable kinds. E. purpurea (often called Rudbeckia) is the showiest species. Height 3 to 4 ft., with rosy-purple flowers.
Eomecon chionanthus. A lovely poppywort about I ft. high, with pure white flowers 2 to 3 in. across. Root-stocks thick, creeping.
Epimedium. Pretty plants, growing about I ft. high, with elegant foliage, and curious flowers. E. macranthum, white flowers, and E. rubrum, red, are distinctly spurred; E. pinnatum and E. Perralderianum, yellow, less so. They bloom in spring, and prefer a shady situation and a peaty soil.
Eranthis hyemalis. A charming tuberous rooted plant, called winter aconite. Flowers bright yellow, January to March, close to the ground.
Eremurus. Noble plants with thick rootstocks, large sword-like leaves, and spikes of flowers from 3 to 10 ft. high. They require warm sunny spots and rich gritty soil. The best kinds are robustus, pink, 6 to 10 ft.; himalaicus, 4 to 8 ft., white; Aitchisoni, 3 to 5 ft., red; Bungei, 2 to 3 ft., yellow; and aurantiacus, 2 to 3 ft., orangeyellow. There are now several hybrid forms.
Erigeron. Composite plants, variable in character. E. purpureus, ij ft., with pink flower-heads, having narrow twisted ray-florets; E. Roylei, I ft., dark blue; and E. pulchellus, I ft., rich orange, flowering during the summer, are among the best kinds. Good ordinary garden soil.
Erinus. E. alpinus is a beautiful little alpine for rockwork, 3 to 6 in., of tufted habit, with small-toothed leaves, and heads of pinkish-purple or, in a variety, white flowers, early in summer. Sandy well-drained soil.
Erodium. Handsome dwarf tufted plants. E. Manescavi, I to ij ft., has large purplish-red flowers in summer; E. Reichardi, a minute stemless plant, has small heart-shaped leaves in rosette-like tufts, and white flowers striped with pink, produced successively. Light soil.
Eryngium. Very remarkable plants of the umbelliferous order, mostly of an attractive character. E. amethystinum, 2 ft., has the upper part of the stem, the bracts, and heads of flowers all of an amethystine blue. Some of more recent introduction have the aspect of the pine-apple, such as E. bromeliaefolium, E. pandanifolium, and E, eburneum. Deep light soil.
Erythronium. E. dens-canis, the Dog's Tooth Violet, is a pretty dwarf bulbous plant with spotted leaves, and rosy or white flowers produced in spring, and having reflexed petals. Mixed peaty and . loamy soil, deep and cool. Several charming American species are now in cultivation.
Euphorbia. Plants whose beauty resides in the bracts or floral leaves which surround the inconspicuous flowers. E. aleppica, 2 ft., and E. Ckaracias, 2 to 3 ft., with green bracts, are fine plants for rockwork or sheltered corners.
Ferula. Gigantic umbelliferous plants, with magnificent foliage, adapted for shrubbery borders or open spots on lawns. They have thick fleshy roots, deeply penetrating, and therefore requiring deep soil, which should be of a light or sandy character. F. communis, P. glauca, and F. tingitana, the last with glossy lozenge-shaped leaflets, grow 8 to 10 ft. high; F. Ferulago, with more finely cut leaves, grows 5 to 6 ft. high. They flower in early spring, and all have a fine appearance when in bloom, on account of their large showy umbels of yellow flowers.
Fritillaria. A large genus of liliaceous bulbs, the best known of which is the crown imperial (F. imperialis) and the snake's head (F. Meleagris). There are many charming species grown, such as aurea, pudica, recurva, sewerzowi, askabadensis, etc.
Funkia. Pretty liliaceous plants, with simple conspicuously longitudinal-ribbed leaves, the racemose flowers funnel-shaped and deflexed. F. Sieboldiana, I ft., has lilac flowers; F. grandifiora, 18 in., is white and fragrant; F. coerulea, 18 in., is violet-blue; F. albo-marginata, 15 in., has the leaves edged with white, and the flowers lilac. Rich garden soil.
Gaillardia. Showy composite plants, thriving in good garden soil. G. aristata, 2 ft., has large yellow flower-heads, 2 or 3 in. across, in summer; G. Baeselari and G. Loiselii have the lower part of the rayflorets red, the upper part yellow.
Galanthus. The Snowdrop. Early spring-flowering amaryllidaceous bulbs, with pretty drooping flowers, snow-white, having the tips of the enclosed petals green. The common sort is G. nivalis, which blossoms on the first break of the winter frosts; G. Imperoti, G. Elwesi and G. plicatus have larger flowers.
Galax aphylla. A neat little rock plant, 6 to 8 in. high, with pretty round leaves and white flowers. Requires moist peaty soil.
Galega officinalis. A strong-growing leguminous plant, 2 to 5 ft. high, with pinnate leaves, and masses of pinkish purple pea-like flowers. Also a white variety. Grows anywhere.
Galtpnia candicans. A fine bulbous plant, 3 to 4 ft. high, with drooping white flowers.
Gaura. G. Lindheimeri, 3 to 5 ft., is much branched, with elegant white and red flowers of the onagraceous type, in long slender ramose spikes during the late summer and autumn months. Light garden soil ; not long-lived.
Gentiana. Beautiful tufted erect-stemmed plants preferring a strong rich loamy soil. G. acaulis, known as the Gentianella, forms a close carpet of shining leaves, and in summer bears large erect tubular deep blue flowers. G. Andrewsii, I ft., has, during summer, large deep blue flowers in clusters, the corollas closed at the mouth ; G. asclepiadea, 18 in., purplish-blue, flowers in July.
Geranium. Showy border flowers, mostly growing to a height of 1 1 or 2 ft., having deeply cut leaves, and abundant saucershaped blossoms of considerable, size. G. ibericum, platypetalum, armenum and Endressi are desirable purple- and rose-flowered sorts ; G. sanguineum, a tufted grower, has the flowers a deep rose colour; and the double-flowered white and blue forms of G. pratense and G. sylvaticum make pretty summer flowers. Good garden soil.
Gerbera. A South African genus of composites requiring very warm sunny spots and rich gritty soil. G. Jamesoni, with large scarlet marguerite-like flowers, and G. viridiflora, with white flowers tinged with lilac, are best known. Numerous hybrids have been raised, varying in colour from creamy white to salmon, pink, yellow, red and orange.
Geum. Pretty rosaceous plants. The single and double flowered forms of G. chiloense and its varieties grandiflorum and miniatum, 2 ft., with brilliant scarlet flowers; G. coccineum, 6 to 12 in., scarlet, and G. montana, 9 in., yellow, are among the best sorts. Good garden soil.
Gillenia trifoliaia. A pretty rosaceous plant about 2 ft. high. Flowers white in graceful panicles; flourishes in a mixture of sandy peat and loam.
Gunnera. Remarkable rhubarb-like plants with huge lobed leaves, often 6 ft. across. They should be grown near water as they like much moisture, and a good loamy soil. G. manicala and G. scabra are the two kinds grown.
Gynerium. The Pampas-Grass, a noble species, introduced from Buenos Aires; it forms huge tussocks, 4 or 5 ft. high, above which towards autumn rise the bold dense silvery plumes of the inflorescence. It does best in sheltered nooks.
Gypsophila. Interesting caryophyllaceous plants, thriving in dryish situations. G. paniculata, 2 ft., from Siberia, forms a dense semi-globular mass of small white flowers from July onwards till autumn, and is very useful for cutting.
Haberlea rhodopensis. A pretty rock plant with dense tufts of leaves and bluish-lilac flowers. It likes fibrous peat in fissures of the rocks.
Helenium. Showy composites of free growth in lightish soil. H. autumnale, 4 ft., bears a profusion of yellow-rayed flower-heads in August and September.
Helianthemum. Dwarf subshrubby plants well suited for rockwork, and called Sun-Roses from their blossoms resembling small wild roses and their thriving best in sunny spots. Some of the handsomest are H. roseum, mutabile, cupreum and rhodanthum, with red flowers; H. vulgare flore-pleno, grandiflorum and stramineum, with yellow flowers; and H. macranthum and papyraceum, with the flowers white.
Helianthus. The Sunflower genus, of which there are several ornamental kinds. H. multiflorus, 4 ft., and its double-flowered varieties, bear showy golden yellow flower-heads in profusion, and are well adapted for shrubbery borders; H. orgyalis, 8 ft., has drooping willow-like leaves. Many other showy species.
Helichrysum. Composite plants, with the flower-heads of the scarious character known as Everlastings. H. arenarium, 6 to 8 in., is a pretty species, of dwarf spreading habit, with woolly leaves and corymbs of golden yellow flowers, about July.
Hetteborus. Charming very early blooming dwarf ranunculaceous herbs. H. niger or Christmas Rose, the finest variety of which is caljed maximus, has white showy saucer-shaped flowers; H. orientalis, I ft., rose-coloured; H. atrorubens, I ft., purplish-red; and H. colchicus, I ft., deep purple. Deep rich loam.
Hemerocallis. The name of the day lilies of which H. fulva, H. disticha, H. flava, H. Dumortieri and H. aurantiaca major are the most showy, all with yellow or orange flowers. They flourish in any garden soil.
Hepatica. Charming little tufted plants requiring good loamy soil, and sometimes included with Anemone. H. triloba, 4 in., has three-lobed leaves, and a profusion of small white, blue, or pink single or double flowers, from February onwards; H. angulosa, from Transylvania, 6 to 8 in., is a larger plant, with sky-blue flowers.
Hesperis. H. matronalis, I to 2 ft., is the old garden Rocket, of which some double forms with white and purplish blossoms are amongst the choicest of border flowers. They require a rich loamy soil, not too dry, and should be divided and transplanted into fresh soil annually or every second year, in the early autumn season.
Heuchera. H. sanguinea and its varieties are charming and brilliant border plants with scarlet flowers in long racemes. Rich and well-drained soil.
Hibiscus. Showy malvaceous plants. H. Moscheutos, rosecoloured, and H. palustris, purple, both North American herbs, 3 to 5 ft. high, are suitable for moist borders or for boggy places near the margin of lakes.
Iberis. The Candytuft, of which several dwarf spreading subshrubby species are amongst the best of rock plants, clothing the surface with tufts of green shoots, and flowering in masses during May and June. The best are /. saxatilis, 6 to 10 in. ; /. sempervirens , 12 to 15 in.; and /. Pruitii (variously called coriacea, carnosa, correaefolia) , 12 in.
Incarvillea. I. Delavayi is the best species for the open air. It grows 2 ft. high and has large tubular rosy carmine blossoms. It likes rich sandy loam and sunny spots.
Lathyrus. Handsome climbing herbs, increased by seeds or division. L. grandiflorus, 3 ft., has large rose-coloured flowers with purplish-crimson wings, in June; L. latifolius, the everlasting pea, 6 ft., has bright rosy flowers in the late summer and autumn; the vars. albus, white, and superbus, deep rose, are distinct. Ordinary garden soil.
Lavatera. L. thuringiaca, 4 ft., is a fine erect-growing malvaceous plant, producing rosy-pink blossoms freely, about August and September. Good garden soil.
Leucojum. Snowflake. Pretty early-blooming bulbs, quite hardy. L. vernum, 6 in., blooms shortly after the snowdrop, and should have a light rich soil and sheltered position; L. carpaticum, flowers about a month later; L. pulchellum, ij ft., blooms in April and May; and L. aestivum, 2 ft., in May. All have white pendant flowers, tipped with green.
Liatris. Pretty composites with the flower-heads collected into spikes. L. pumila, I ft., L. squarrosa, 2 to 3 ft., L. spicata, 3 to 4 ft., L. pycnostachya, 3 to 4 ft., all have rosy-purplish flowers. Deep, cool, and moist soil.
Linaria. Toadflax. Pretty scrophulariads, of which L. alpina, 3 to 6 in., with bluish-violet flowers having a brilliant orange spot, is suitable for rockwork; L. dalmatica, 4 ft., and L. genistifolia, 3 ft., both yellow-flowered, are good border plants; L. vulgaris, the common British toad-flax, and its regular peloriate form, are very handsome and free flowering during the summer months.
Linum. Flax. L. alpinum, 6 in., large, dark blue; L. narbonnense, ij ft., large, blue; L. perenne, ij ft., cobalt blue; and L. arboreum (flavum), I ft., yellow, are all pretty. The last is liable to suffer from damp during winter, and some spare plants should be wintered in a frame. It is really shrubby in character.
Lithospermum. L. prostratum, 3 in., is a trailing evergreen herb, with narrow hairy leaves, and paniculate brilliant blue flowers in May and June. Well adapted for rockwork or banks of sandy soil.
Lupinus. Showy erect-growing plants with papilionaceous flowers, thriving in good deep garden soil. L. polyphyllus, 3 ft., forms noble tufts of palmate leaves, and long spikes of bluishpurple or white flowers in June and July; L. arboreus is subshrubby, and has yellow flowers.
Lychnis. Brilliant erect-growing caryophyllaceous plants, thriving best in beds of peat earth or of deep sandy loam. L. chalcedonica, 3 ft., has dense heads of bright scarlet flowers, both single and double, in June and July; L. fulgens, I ft., vermilion;!,. Haageana, ii ft., scarlet; and L. grandiflora, i to 2 ft., with clusters of scarlet, crimson, pink and white flowers. All large-flowered and showy, but require a little protection in winter.
Lysimachia. The best known is the Creeping Jenny, L. Nummularid, much used for trailing over rockeries ana window boxes, with bright yellow flowers. The variety aurea with golden leaves is also popular. Other species that grow from 2 to 3 ft. high, and are good border plants, are L. clethroides, with white spikes of flowers; L. vulgaris, L. thyrsiflora, L. ciliata, L. verticillata and L. punctata, all yellow.
Malva. M. moschata, 2 ft., with a profusion of pale pink or white flowers, and musky deeply cut leaves, though a British plant, is worth introducing to the flower borders when the soil is light and free.
Meconopsis. The Welsh poppy, M. cambrica, I to 2 ft. high, yellow, and M. Wallichi, from, the Himalayas, 4 to 6 ft. high with pale blue flowers, are the best known perennials of the genus. The last-named, however, is best raised from seeds every year, and treated like the biennial kinds.
Mertensia. M. virginica, I to ij ft., azure blue, shows flowers in drooping panicles in May and June. It does best in shady peat borders.
Mimulus. Monkey-flower. Free-blooming, showy scrophulariaceous plants, thriving best in moist situations. M. cardinalis, 2 to 3 ft., has scarlet flowers, with the limb segments reflexed; M. luteus and its many garden forms, I to i| ft., are variously coloured and often richly spotted; and M. cupreus, 8 to 10 in., is bright coppery-red. M. moschatus is the Musk-plant, of which the variety Harrisoni is a greatly improved form, with much larger yellow flowers.
Monarda. Handsome labiate plants, flowering towards autumn, and preferring a cool soil and partially shaded situation. M. didyma, 2 ft., scarlet or white; M. fistulosa, 3 ft., purple; and M, purpurea, 2 ft., deep purple, are good border flowers.
Muscari. Pretty dwarf spring-flowering bulbs. M. botryoides (Grape Hyacinth), 6 in., blue or white, is the handsomest; M. moschatum (Musk Hyacinth), 10 in., has peculiar livid greenishyellow flowers and a strong musky odour; M. monstrosum jJFeather Hyacinth) bears sterile flowers broken up into a feather-like mass. Good garden soil.
Myosotidium nobile. A remarkable plant, ij to 2 ft. high, with large blue forget-me-not-like flowers. Requires gritty peat soil and cool situations, but must be protected from frost in winter.
Myosotis. Forget-me-not. Lovely boraginaceous plants. M. dissitiflora, 6 to 8 in., with large, handsome and abundant sky-blue flowers, is the best and earliest, flowering from February onwards; it does well in light cool soils, preferring peaty ones, and should be renewed annually from seeds or cuttings. M. rupicola, 2 to 3 in., intense blue, is a fine rock plant, preferring shady situations and gritty soil; M. sylvatica, I ft., blue, pink or white, used for spring bedding, should be sown annually in August.
Narcissus. See NARCISSUS.
Nepeta. N. Mussinii, I ft., is a compactly spreading greyishleaved labiate, with lavender-blue flowers, and is sometimes used for bedding or for marginal lines in large compound beds.
Nierembergia. N. rivularis, 4 in., from La Plata, has slender, creeping, rooting stems, bearing stalked ovate leaves, and large funnel-shaped white flowers, with a remarkably long slender tube; especially adapted for rockwork, requiring moist sandy loam.
Nymphaea. See WATER-LILY.
Oenothera. The genus of the Evening Primrose, consisting of showy species, all of which grow and blossom freely in rich deep soils. Oe. missouriensis (macrocarpa), 6 to 12 in., has stout trailing branches, lance-shaped leaves and large yellow blossoms; Oe. taraxacifolia, 6 to 12 in., has a stout crown from which the trailing branches spring out, and these bear very large white flowers, changing to delicate rose; this perishes in cold soils, and should therefore be raised from seed annually. Of erect habit are Oe. speciosa, I to 2 ft., with large white flowers; Oe. fruticosa, 2 to 3 ft., with abundant yellow flowers; and Oe. serotina, 2 ft., also bright yellow.
Omphalodes. Elegant dwarf boraginaceous plants. O. verna, 4 to 6 in., a creeping, shade-loving plant, has bright blue flowers in the very early spring; O. Lueiliae, 6 in., has much larger lilac-blue flowers, and is an exquisite rock plant for warm, sheltered spots. Light sandy soil.
Onosma. O. taurica, 6 to 8 in., is a charming boraginaceous plant from the Caucasus, producing hispid leaves and cymose heads of drooping, tubular, yellow flowers. It is of evergreen habit, and requires a warm position on the rockwork and well-drained sandy soil ; or a duplicate should be sheltered during winter in a cold, dry frame.
Ornithogalum. The Star of Bethlehem. O. arabicum can only be grown in the warmest parts of the kingdom, and then requires protection in winter. Other species, all bulbous, are O. riutans, O. pyramidale, O. pyrenaicum, and the common Star of Bethlehem, O. umbellatum; all are easily grown, and have white flowers.
Ostrowskya magnified. A magnificent bellflower from Bokhara, 4 to 5 ft. high, and white flowers tinted and veined with lilac, 3 to 5 in. across. Requires rich, gritty loam of good depth, as it produces tuberous roots I to 2 ft. long.
Ourisia. Handsome scrophulariaceous plants, from Chile, thriving in moist, well-drained peaty soil, and in moderate shade. O. coccinea, I ft., has erect racemes of pendent crimson flowers.
Papaver. The Poppy. Very showy plants, often of strong growth, and of easy culture in ordinary garden soil. P. orientate, 3 ft., has crimson-scarlet flowers, 6 in. across, and the variety bracteatum closely resembles it, but has leafy bracts just beneath the blossom. P. alpinum, 6 in., white with yellow centre; P. nudicaule, I ft., yellow, scented, and P. pilosum, I to 2 ft., deep orange, are ornamental smaller kinds.
Pentstemon. -The popular garden varieties have sprung from P. Hartwegii and P. Cobaea. Other distinct kinds are P. campanulatus, ii ft., pale rose, of bushy habit; P. humilis, 9 in., bright blue; P. speciosus, cyananthus and Jaffrayanus, 2 to 3 ft., all bright blue; P. barbatus, 3 to 4 ft., scarlet, in long terminal panicles; P. Murrayanus, 6 ft., with scarlet flowers and connate leaves; and P. Palmeri, 3 to 4 ft., with large, wide-tubed, rose-coloured flowers.
Petasites. P. fragrans, the Winter Heliotrope, though of weedy habit, with ample cordate coltsfoot-like leaves, yields in January and February its abundant spikes, about I ft. high, of greyish flowers scented like heliotrope; it should have a corner to itself.
Phlomis. Bold and showy labiates, growing in ordinary soil. P. Russelliana (lunariaefolia), 4 ft., yellow, and P. tuberosa, 3 ft., purplish-rose, both with downy hoary leaves, come in well in broad flower borders.
Phygelius. P. capensis from South Africa is hardy south of the Thames and in favoured localities. Flowers tubular scarlet, on branching stems, 2 to 3 ft. high. Requires light, rich soil.
Physalis. P. Alkekengi from South Europe has long been known in gardens for its bright orange-red globular calyxes. It has been surpassed by the much larger and finer P. Francheti from Japan; the brilliant calyxes are often 3 in. in diameter in autumn. Grows in any garden soil.
Physostegia. Tall, autumn-blooming labiates, of easy growth in ordinary garden soils. P. imbricata, 5 to 6 ft., has pale purple flowers in closely imbricated spikes.
Phytolacca. Ornamental strong-growing perennials requiring much space. P. acinosa, from the Himalayas, 3 to 4 ft., with whitish flowers in erect spikes. P. decandra, the North American Poke Weed or Red Ink plant, grows 5 to 10 ft. high, has fleshy poisonous roots, erect purple stems and white flowers. P. icosandra, from Mexico, 2 to 3 ft., pinky white. The foliage in all cases is handsome. Ordinary garden soil.
Platycodon.P. grandiflorum, 6 to 24 in. high, is a fine Chinese perennial with flattish, bell-shaped flowers, 2 to 3 in. across, and purple in colour. The variety Mariesi (or pumilum) is dwarf, with larger, deeper-coloured flowers. Requires rich sandy loam.
Podophyllum. Ornamental herbs with large lobed leaves. P. Emodi, 6 to 12 in. high, from the Himalayas, has large white or palerose flowers, and in autumn bright red, hen's-egg-like fruits. P. peltatum, the North American mandrake, has large umbrella-like leaves and white flowers; P. pleianthum, from China, purple. They all require moist, peaty soil in warm, sheltered nooks.
Polemonium. Pretty border flowers. P. coeruleum (Jacob's Ladder), 2 ft., has elegant pinnate leaves, and long panicles of blue rotate flowers. The variety called variegatum has very elegantly marked leaves, and is sometimes used as a margin or otherwise in bedding arrangements. Good garden soil.
Polygonatum. Elegant liliaceous plants, with rhizomatous stems. P. multiflorum (Solomon's Seal), 2 to 3 ft., with arching stems, and drooping white flowers from the leaf axils, is a handsome border plant, doing especially well in partial shade amongst shrubs, and also well adapted for pot culture for early forcing. Good garden soil.
Polygonum. A large family, varying much in character, often weedy, but of easy culture in ordinary soil. P. vacciniifolium, 6 to 10 in., is a pretty prostrate subshrubby species, with handsome rose-pink flowers, suitable for rockwork, and prefers boggy soil; P. affine (Brunonis), I ft., deep rose, is a showy border plant, flowering in the late summer; P. cuspidatum, 8 to 10 ft., is a grand object for planting where a screen is desired, as it suckers abundantly, and its tall spotted stems and handsome cordate leaves have quite a noble appearance. Other fine species are P. baldschuanium, a climber, P. sphaerostachyum, P. lanigerum, P. polystachyum and P. sachalinense, all bold and handsome.
Potentilla. The double varieties are fine garden plants obtained from P. argyrophylla atrosanguinea and P. nepalensis. The colours include golden-yellow, red, orange-yellow, crimson, maroon and intermediate shades. They all flourish in rich sandy soil.
Primula. Beautiful and popular spring flowers, of which many forms are highly esteemed in most gardens. P. vulgaris, 6 in., affords numerous handsome single- and double-flowered varieties, with various-coloured flowers for the spring flower-beds and borders. Besides this, P. Sieboldii (cortusoides amoena), i ft., originally deep rose with white eye, but now including many varieties of colour, such as white, pink, lilac and purple; P. japonica, I to 2 ft., crimson-rose; P. denticulata, I ft., bright bluish-lilac, with its allies P. erosa and P. purpurea, all best grown in a cold frame; P. viscosa, 6 in., purple, and its white variety nivalis, with P. pedemontana and P. spectabilis, 6 in., both purple; and the charming little Indian P. rosea, 3 to 6 in., bright cherry-rose colour, are but a few of the many beautiful kinds in cultivation.
Pulmonaria. Handsome dwarf, boraginaceous plants, requiring good deep garden soil. P. officinalis, I ft., has prettily mottled leaves and blue flowers; P. sibirica is similar in character, but has broader leaves more distinctly mottled with white.
Pyrethrum. Composite plants of various character, but of easy culture. P. Parthenium eximium, 2 ft., is a handsome double white form of ornamental character for the mixed border; P. uliginosum, 5 to 6 ft., has fine large, white, radiate flowers in October; P. Tchihatchewii, a close-growing, dense evergreen, creeping species, with long-stalked, white flower-heads, is adapted for covering slopes in lieu of turf, and for rockwork.
Ramondia. R. pyrenaica, 3 to 6 in., is a pretty dwarf plant, requiring a warm position on the rockwork and a moist, peaty soil more or less gritty; it has rosettes of ovate spreading root-leaves, and large purple, yellow-centred, rotate flowers, solitary, or two to three together, on naked stalks.
Ranunculus. The florists' ranunculus is a cultivated form of R. asiaticus (see RANUNCULUS). R. amplexicaulis, i ft., white; R. aconitifolius , I to 2 ft., white, with its double variety R. aconitifolius flore-pleno (Fair Maids of France) ; and R. acns flore-pleno (Bachelor's Buttons), 2 ft., golden yellow, are pretty. Of dwarfer interesting plants there are R. alpestris, 4 in., white; .R. gramineus, 6 to 10 in., yellow; R. parnassifolius, 6 in., white; and R. rutaefolius, 4 to 6 in., white with orange centre.
Rodgersia. Handsome herbs of the saxifrage family. R. podophyllo, with large bronzy-green leaves cut into 5 large lobes, and tall branching spikes 3 to 4 ft. high the whole plant resembling one of the large meadow sweets. R. aesculifplia, yellowish-white; R. Henrici, deep purple; R. pinnata, fleshy pink; and R. sambucifolia, white, are recently introduced species from China. They require rich sandy peat and warm sheltered spots.
Romneya. R. Coulteri, a fine Californian plant, with large white flowers on shoots often as high as 7 ft.; R. trichocalyx is similar. Both require very warm, sunny spots and rich, sandy soil, and should not be disturbed often.
Rudbeckia. Bold-habited composite plants, well suited for shrubbery borders, and thriving in light loamy soil. The flowerheads have a dark-coloured elevated disk. R. Drummondii, 2 to 3 ft., with the ray-florets reflexed, yellow at the tip and purplishbrown towards the base; R.'fulgida, 2 ft. golden-yellow with dark chocolate disk, the flower-heads 2 to 3 in. across; and R. speciosa, 2 to 3 ft., orange-yellow with blackish-purple disk, the flower-heads 3 to 4 in. across, are showy plants.
Sagittaria. Graceful water or marsh plants with hastate leaves, and tuberous, running and fibrous roots. 5. japonica plena; S. lancifolia, S. macrophylla and 5. sagittifolia, are among the best kinds, all with white flowers.
Salvia. The Sage, a large genus of labiates, often very handsome, but sometimes too tender for English winters. 5. Sclarea, 5 to 6 ft., is a very striking plant little more than a biennial, with branched panicles of bluish flowers issuing from rosy-coloured bracts; 5. patens, 2 ft., which is intense azure, has tuberous roots, and may be taken up, stored away and replanted in spring like a dahlia. 5. pratensis, 2 ft., blue, a showy native species, is quite hardy; the variety lupinoides has the centre of the lower lip white.
Saxifraga. A very large genus of rock and border plants of easy culture. The Megasea group, to which S. ligulata, S. cordifolia and S. crassifolia belong, are early-flowering kinds of great beauty, with fleshy leaves and large cymose clusters of flowers of various shades of rose, red and purple. Another very distinct group with silvery foliage the crustaceous group contains some of our choicest Alpines. Of these 5. caesia, S. calyciflora, S. Cotyledon are among the best known. Some of the species look more like lichens than flowering plants. The green moss-like saxifrages are also a very distinct group, with dense tufted leaves which appear greener in winter than in summer. The flowers are borne on erect branching stems and are chiefly white in colour. Saxifraga umbrosa (London Pride) and S. Geum belong to still another group, and are valuable alike on border and rockery. 5. peltata is unique owing to its large peltate leaves, often I ft. to 18 in. across, with stalks I to 2 ft. long. Flowers in April, white or pinkish. Likes plenty of water and a moist peaty soil or marshy place. 5. sarmentosa, the well-known " mother of thousands," is often grown as a pot plant in cottagers' windows.
Scilla. Beautiful dwarf bulbous plants, 'thriving in well-worked sandy loam, or sandy peat. S. bifolia, 3 in., and 5. sibirica, 4 in., both intense blue, are among the most charming of early spring flowers; 5. patula, 6 to 8 in., and 5. campanulata, I ft., with tubular greyish-blue flowers, freely produced, are fine border plants, as is the later-blooming S. peruviana, 6 to 8 in., dark blue or white.
Sedum. Pretty succulent plants of easy growth, and mostly suitable for rockwork. They are numerous, varied in the colour of both leaves and foliage, and mostly of compact tufted growth. S. spectabile, I to l ft., pink, in great cymose heads, is a fine plant for the borders, and worthy also of pot-culture for greenhouse decoration. Mention may also be made of the common 5. acre (Stonecrop), 3 in., yellow, and its variety with yellow-tipped leaves.
Sempervivum. House-Leek. Neat-growing, succulent plants, forming rosettes of fleshy leaves close to the ground, and rapidly increasing by runner-like offsets; they are well adapted for rockwork, and do best in sandy soil. The flowers are stellate, cymose, on stems rising from the heart of the leafy rosettes. 5. arachnoideum, purplish, 5. arenarium, yellow, 5. glofaferum and 5. Laggeri, rose, grow when in flower 3 to 6 in. high; 5. calcareum, rose colour, and S. Boutignianum, pale rose, both have glaucous leaves tipped with purple; 5. Heuffelii, yellow, with deep chocolate leaves, and 5. Wulfeni, sulphur-yellow, are from 8 to 12 in. high.
Senecio. A large genus with comparatively few good garden plants. Large and coarse-growing kinds like S. Doria, S. macrophyllus and 5. sarracenicus are good for rough places; all yellowflowered. 5. pulcher is a charming plant, 2 to 3 ft. high, with rosypurple flower-heads, having a bright orange centre. It likes a warm corner and moist soil. 5. clivorum, from China, has large roundish leaves and orange-yellow flowers. It flourishes near water and in damp places.
Shortia. S. galacifolia, a beautiful tufted plant 2 to 3 in. high, with roundish crenate leaves, on long stalks, and white funnelshaped flowers inMarch and April. 5. uniflora from Japan is closely related. The leaves of both assume rich purple-red tints in autumn. Warm sunny situations and rich sandy loam and peat are requi/ed.
Silene. Pretty caryophyllaceous plants, preferring sandy loam, and well adapted for rockwork. 5. alpestris, 6 in., white, and S. quadridentata, 4 in., white, are beautiful tufted plants for rockwork or the front parts of borders; S. maritima flore-pleno, 6 in., white, S. Elizabethae, 4 in., bright rose, and 5. Schafta, 6 in., purplish-rose, are also good kinds.
Sisyrinchium. Pretty dwarf iridaceous plants, thriving in peaty soil. S. grandiflorum, 10 in., deep purple or white, blooms about April, and is a fine plant for pot -culture in cold frames.
Sparaxis. Graceful bulbous plants from South Africa. 5. grandiflora, with deep violet-purple, and S. tricolor, with rich orange-red, flowers are best known. 5. pulcherrima, a lovely species, 3 to 6 ft. high, with drooping blood-red blossoms, is now referred to the genus Dierama. A warm, light, but rich soil in sheltered spots required.
Spiraea. Vigorous growing plants of great beauty, preferring good, deep, rather moist soil; the flowers small but very abundant, in large corymbose or spicate panicles. 5. Aruncus, 4 ft., white; 5. astilbioides, 2 ft., white; 5. Filipendula, ij ft., and 5. Ulmaria, 3 ft., both white; 5. palmata, 2 ft., rosy-crimson; and S. venusta, 3 ft., carmine rose, are some of the best.
Statice. Pretty plants with broad, radical leaves, and a muchbranched inflorescence of numerous small flowers. 5. latifolia, 2 ft., greyish-blue; 5. tatarica, I ft., lavender-pink; 5. speciosa, ij ft., rose colour; and S. eximia, ij ft., rosy-lilac are good border plants. 5. beUidifolia, 9 in., lavender; 5. emarginata, 6 in., purple; 5. globulariaefolia, 9 in., white; and S. nana, 4 in. are good sorts for the rockery.
Stenactis. S. speciosa, I to 2 ft., is a showy composite, of easy culture in good garden soil; it produces large corymbs of flowerheads, with numerous narrow blue ray-florets surrounding the yellow disk. Now more generally known as Erigeron.
Stipa. S. pennata (Feather Grass), ij ft., is a very gracefulhabited grass, with stiff slender erect leaves, and long feathery awns to the seeds.
Stokesia. 5. cyanea, 2 ft., is a grand, autumn-flowering, composite plant, with blue flower-heads, 4 in. across. Sandy loam and warm situation.
Symphytum. Rather coarse-growing but showy boraginaceous plants, succeeding in ordinary soil. S. caucasicum, 2 ft., with blue flowers changing to red, is one of the finer kinds for early summer blooming.
Thalictrum. Free-growing but rather weedy ranunculaceous plants, in many cases having elegantly cut foliage. T. aquilegifolium, 2 ft., purplish from the conspicuous stamens, the leaves glaucous, is a good border plant ; and T. minus has foliage somewhat resembling that of the Maidenhair fern. Ordinary garden soil.
Tiarella. T. cordifolia, the foam flower, is very ornamental in border or rockery. Leaves heart-shaped lobed and toothed; flowers white starry ; ordinary garden soil.
Tigridia. Lovely bulbous plants called tiger flowers, useful in the warmest parts of the kingdom for the border in rich but gritty soil. T. Pavonia, the peacock tiger flower, from Mexico, grows I to 2 ft. high, with plaited sword-like leaves, and large flowers about 6 in. across, having zones of violet and yellow blotched with purple and tipped with scarlet. There are many varieties, all charming.
Trillium. T. grandiflorum, the wood-lily of North America, is the finest. It has large white flowers and grows freely in peaty soil in shady borders. There are several other species, some with purplish flowers.
Tritonia. A genus of South African plants with fibrous-coated corms or solid bulbs, often known as montbretas. T. crocata, 2 ft., orange-yellow, T. crocosmiaeflora, 2 to 2\ ft., orange-scarlet, and T. Pottsi, 3 to 4 ft., bright yellow, are the best-known varieties, of which there are many subsidiary ones, some being very large and free in flowering. A rich, gritty soil, and warm, sunny situations are best for these plants.
Triteleia. Charming spring-flowering bulbs, thriving in any good sandy soil. T. Murrayana, 8 in., lavender-blue, and T. uniflora, 6 in., white, are both pretty plants of the easiest culture, either for borders or rockeries.
Tritoma. Splendid stoutish-growing plants of noble aspect, familiarly known as the Poker plant, From their erect, rigid spikes of flame-coloured flowers; sometimes called Kniphofia. T. Uvaria, 3 to 4 ft., bright orange-red, passing to yellow in the lower flowers, is a fine autumnal decorative plant. They should be protected from frosts by a covering of ashes over the crown during winter.
Trollius. Showy ranunculaceous plants, of free growth, flowering about May and June. T. europaeus, 18 in., lemon globular; T. asiaticus, 2 ft., deep yellow; and T. napellifolius, 2 to 2j ft., golden yellow, are all fine showy kinds. Rich and rather moist soil.
Tulipa. Splendid dwarfish bulbs, thriving in deep, sandy, wellenriched garden soil, and increased by offsets. They bloom during the spring and early summer months. T. Gesneriana, the parent of the florists' tulip, 12 to 18 in., crimson and other colours; T. Eichleri, I ft., crimson with dark spot; T. Greigi, I ft., orange with dark spot edged with yellow, and having dark spotted leaves; T. oculus solis, I ft., scarlet with black centre; and T. sylvestris, 12 to 1 8 in., bright yellow, are showy kinds.
Veratrum. Distinct liliaceous plants with bold ornamental leaves regularly folded and plaited. V. album, 3 to 5 ft., has whitish blossoms in dense panicles, I to 2 ft. long. V. nigrum, 2 to 3 ft., has blackish-purple flowers, also V. Maacki, 2 ft. Rich sandy loam and peat.
Verbascum. Showy border flowers of erect spire-like habit, of the easiest culture. V. Chaixii, 4 to 5 ft., yellow, in large pyramidal panicles; V. phoeniceum, 3 ft., rich purple or white; and V. formosum, 6 ft., golden yellow in dense panicles, are desirable species.
Veronica. The Speedwell family, containing many ornamental members; all the hardy species are of the easiest cultivation in ordinary garden soil. The rotate flowers are in close, erect spikes, sometimes branched. V. crassifolia, 2 ft., dark blue; V. incarnata, ij ft., flesh-colour; V. corymbosa, ij ft., pale blue in corymboselyarranged racemes; V. gentianoides, 2 ft., grey with blue streaks; V. spicata, blue, and its charming white variety alba; and V. virginica, 5 ft., white, are distinct.
Vinca. Periwinkle. Pretty rock plants, growing freely in ordinary soil. V. herbacea, of creeping habit, with purplish-blue flowers; V. minor, of trailing habit, blue; and V. major, I to 2 ft. high, also trailing, are suitable for the rock garden. The last two are evergreen, and afford varieties which differ in the colour of their flowers, while some are single and others double.
Viola. -Violet. Charming dwarf plants, mostly evergreen and of tufted habit, requiring well-worked rich sandy soil. V. calcarata, 6 in., light blue; V. cornuta, 6 to 8 in., blue; V. lutea, 4 in., yellow; V. altaica, 6 in., yellow or violet with yellow eye; V. palmaensis, 6 to 8 in., lavender-blue; V. pedata, 6 in., pale blue; and V. odorata, the Sweet Violet, in its many single and double flowered varieties, are all desirable.
Yucca. Noble subarborescent liliaceous plants, which should be grown in every garden. They do well in light, well-drained soils, and have a close family resemblance, the inflorescence being a panicle of white, drooping, tulip-shaped flowers, and the foliage rosulate, sword-shaped and spear-pointed. Of the more shrubbyhabited sorts Y. gloriosa, recurvifolia and Treculeana are good and distinct ; and of the dwarfer and more herbaceous sorts Y. filamentosa, flaccida and angustifolia are distinct and interesting kinds, the first two flowering annually.
The taste for cultivation of the class of plants, of which the foregoing list embraces some of the more prominent members, is on the increase, and gardens will benefit by its extension.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)