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My 10 ( + 1) favorite garden plants 2022

In a world of thousands of plants, it is very difficult to make a top ten. There is so much beautiful in between.. A few years ago I also made a list, but as time goes on and you get to know more and more plants, you come across beautiful and new things. In addition, time also ensures that your taste changes and your top ten list looks different again. So a good update is in order! The favorite perennials and grasses that I have collected have stolen my green heart in recent years. They all have their own qualities and characteristics that I appreciate very much. For me as a designer it is important that a plant is beautiful all season long and shows different qualities over time, not just that it can bloom beautifully. A good planting plan also comes into its own when these characteristics are well matched, for 4 seasons. With each plant I give a short description about these qualities, but if you still have questions about it, leave them in the comments. I secretly also added an 11th plant, a fern, which in my opinion should not be missing because ferns are really fantastic! I could also write a blog about that.. But first! The 10 ( + 1) favorites!


1 - Kalimeris 'Jürgen Wever'


When we talk about the aesthetics of a plant, we can place the plants in different categories. From bombastic and super striking in color and shape to modest and sweet and more in the background, to make the other stand out a little more. Kalimeris 'Jürgen Wever' belongs to the second category and this can be clearly seen in the photo below. The Aster related plant from Japan has a beautiful lilac - light blue color and a star-like flower with a yellow heart. Not very striking in a border you would think, but every time I walk around the nursery, this is the first plant that catches my eye. Especially the color and her bushy growth do it! Besides the fact that this plant is beautiful in all its modesty, it is also a very healthy plant that flowers from June to September, without mildew which some Asters can suffer from..

Height: 100 cm Location: sunny



Kalimeris 'Jürgen Wever' between Astilbe, Monarda, Sanguisorba en Salvia
Kalimeris 'Jürgen Wever' between Astilbe, Monarda, Sanguisorba en Salvia

2 - Euphorbia x martinii


Very interesting, that Euphorbia! I actually didn't know this plant at all until I tried out some varieties in my urban garden and in my test garden. I am pleasantly surprised.. WOW what a plant. Among Euphorbias there are many species. Euphorbia is one of the largest plant genera in the world. You have some terribly rampant species such as Euphorbia cyparissias 'Fens Ruby' (please don't plant this in your garden because you'll never get rid of it! ) and Euphorbia robbiae, which is also rampant, but it is still manageable. You can easily remove those new shoots. Don't forget your gloves.. The cultivars I really like are Euphorbia 'Forescate' and Euphorbia x martinii. Both beautiful 365 days a year and not rampant. I am particularly pleased with the latter. Euphorbia x martinii grows in my city garden next to Anemone cylindrica (which is also in this top ten) and Deschampsia 'Palava'. A beautiful combination that grow up together and have a different beautiful view every day. Especially in July, when the Deschampsia shines its golden locks in the sun, the Anemone has lost its petals and the buds form the picture and the Euphorbia takes on beautiful orange hues. An image that makes me feel warm inside. Euphorbia x martinii is so interesting to me because this plant is really beautiful all year round. In early spring, this plant gives the border some body, because when everything is cut off at the end of February, it remains upright, like a kind of small shrub. In April the plant turns bright green and has small red flowers. Later in the spring, when everything starts to grow nicely, all the plants blend in nicely and the Euphorbia may be less noticeable, until it starts to turn orange in the summer. This is my favorite moment, so beautiful! Always plant this Euphorbia solitary, I don't really see them in a group. Height: 60 cm Width: 60 cm Location: sunny



Euphorbia x martinii
Euphorbia x martinii

3 - Schizachyrium 'The Blues'


Like the Euphorbia, this is a plant that constantly transforms into a new face during the seasons, but unlike the Euphorbia that gives body all year round, the Schizachyrium remains a low grass until summer. It takes a while to reach some height, but then the party really starts. It starts with threadlike and gray stems, only to turn red a few weeks later. In September the grass starts to bloom and for this reason you grow this plant in the garden. Fluffy little spikelets that light up so beautifully in the low autumn sun. A beautiful image! Height: 70 cm Location: sunny



Schizachyrium 'The Blues'
Schizachyrium 'The Blues'

4 - Pycnanthemum virginianum


Another one from the 'modest' category and a plant that makes another look more beautiful. This plant is also new to me, but I am very pleased with it. It is a wonderfully smelling plant and the insects think so too! If you want more of this in your garden, this is a very welcome plant. In addition, both the leaves and the flowers are edible. The Indians used these plants as a remedy for colds, flu and coughs. In addition, she wouldn't look out of place as a new mint tea in the cafes. A nice combination I had with this Pycnanthemum in the test garden was with Sedum 'Matrona', Stipa tenuissima, Trollius 'Alabaster' and possibly Briza media. I don't have a photo of this combination yet (image is in my head) but I will definitely add it later. I also sometimes use it in the mix with Echinacea's. I got that mix combination from Piet Oudolf, so I can't take credit for that ;) Height: 90 cm Location: sunny



Pycnanthemum virginianum
Pycnanthemum virginianum

5 - Anemone cylindrica


I don't know what it is about those little flowers, but I just love it. This Anemone is another case of modesty. Perhaps number one in this category. I find the course of the plant over time very pleasant. It starts with the growth of nice, large and fresh leaves, which find their way upwards more and more. At some point the stems grow upwards where a short-term bloom of these soft yellow flowers takes place. The plant soon loses its petals, after which the heart of the plant remains, but still gets bigger and bigger. The second photo shows how these floating spheres float nicely in front of the Deschampsia. In late autumn, the balls start to fluff up more and more and the seeds blow off like dandelion umbrellas. The Anemone also self-seeds there, but certainly not annoyingly and also close to the mother plant. The seedlings are easy to recognize and you can choose to leave them where you can or remove them where you don't want them. By letting some seedlings germinate here and there, a more natural atmosphere is created in your border, which I think is very nice. This gives you more variation in height and sizes of the plants. Height: 90 - 110 Location: Sunny



Anemone cylindrica in bloom
Anemone cylindrica in bloom

Dancing seed heads of the Anemone cylindrica
Dancing seed heads of the Anemone cylindrica

6 - Cenolophium denudatum


If I had to choose a favorite flower shape among all plants, it would certainly be an umbel flower. I think Foeniculum 'Giant Bronze' is beautiful, but I also like to use Cenolophium very much (preferably because the Foeniculum does self-seed in a bizarre way). The reason that I love the Cenolophium can be seen in the following photo. It always makes the border photogenic! With its parsley-like leaf (which is very sensitive to snails), the plant is already very noticeable in the spring. There are few other plants that have this leaf. A difference in leaf structure between different plants is very important for the design, especially in spring. When the screens start to bloom, the second super plus follows, of course. What is less about this plant is that it quickly becomes bare after flowering, which creates a 'hole' in the border. So choose the neighbors of this plant carefully. The plant will also self-seed a bit, which you just have to keep an eye on. Because leaves are very recognizable, you can remove the seedlings where you don't want them. Height: 100 cm Place: Sunny to half shade



cenolophium denudatum
cenolophium denudatum

7 - Lythrum 'Blush'


After all that modesty, it's time for a stunner that also has a delicious sweet color. At the beginning I had to get used to this plant, it is quite an outsider and cannot be compared to other Lythrums at all. But after a while I was over.. that's how it goes! In the second photo it has been applied in a group and you can see how beautiful the effect of this plant can be. Unfortunately, the plant is not really drought resistant. After a rainless period of two months last spring in the test garden where I can't water, the plant hangs at a height of 50 cm while it normally grows to 80 to 100 cm. Fortunately, everyone can almost always water their plants, so you don't have that problem. This Lythrum has been in the running for a long time and has been bred since the 80s. That it has lasted so long says it all. Still, I don't see him very often. Time for change ;) Height: 80 cm Location: Sunny



Lythrum 'Blush'
Lythrum 'Blush'

Photo taken by Heather Edwards

8 - Stipa pseudoichu


A simple look, but one that attracts a lot of attention as soon as the spikes shine in the sun, see first photo below. A few years ago I bought this from Coen Jansen in Dalfsen and it has been flourishing in my city garden ever since. She starts the season with slender, upright clumps that wouldn't look out of place here at the back of the border. In June the first signs of the spikes appear and in July the plant grows to a height of 100 cm. I really like the color of the ears! Golden blond that combines so well with the sunlight. This plant also remains beautiful in winter. The plant can self-seed slightly, which is very nice in this case. I put every seedling in a pot so that I can use them in my designs. This plant is not for sale anywhere! ( Except with Coen Jansen a few years ago ) I really don't understand why tie is not available anywhere. If you do know an address, please pass it on.



Stipa pseudoichu
Stipa pseudoichu

Stipa pseudoichu
Stipa pseudoichu

9 - Veronica 'Lilac Fantasy'


Veronica 'Lilac Fantasy' fits somewhat in the same color group as Kalimeris 'Jürgen Wever', and has a lilac, light blue color. The foliage is fresh green and refined. So I would never draw these two side by side in the same plan. What I like to combine this Veronica with is Veronica 'Blue John', which has dark blue spikes. By combining the two you are suggesting as if a natural cross-pollination has taken place, but which of course is not the case. A trick to make the border look even more natural. Ended up still very beautiful! Height: 60 Place: Sunny - Part shade



Veronica 'Lilac Fantasy'
Veronica 'Lilac Fantasy'

Veronica 'Lilac Fantasy' with Veronica 'Blue John'
Veronica 'Lilac Fantasy' with Veronica 'Blue John'

10 - Sedum 'Matrona'


I almost always use sedums, simply because they are so beautiful in the garden; in the spring, in the summer, in the fall. The foliage combines well with other plants and the late pink, grayish blooms that match so well with ornamental grasses are fantastic. This is also a great plant for the bumblebees that are still working hard to stock up on their winter stock. These higher Sedums belong to the celestial key (the lower Sedum to vetkuid) as does this 'Matrona' that has become world famous. I understand why.. The only downside to Sedums is that they get mildew quickly and they don't look like much after a hailstorm. I take those things for granted, because for me the Sedum is indispensable in an autumn atmosphere! Height: 70 Location: sunny



Sedum 'Matrona'
Sedum 'Matrona'

Sedum 'Matrona'
Sedum 'Matrona'

11 - Dryopteris filix-mas


There it is, the +1 plant. There are a lot of special ferns, and maybe this one isn't one of them, but I really like to see it! This fern looks fresh and can therefore be nicely combined with other plants and certainly other materials such as the concrete in my garden. Gives such a nice serene atmosphere. This fern remains fresh green until late autumn and then loses its leaves. Interesting brown rolls emerge in spring and then expand into a new plant as the days lengthen. Height: 50 cm Site: Part shade - shade



Dryopteris filix -mas
Dryopteris filix -mas

Dryopteris filix -mas
Dryopteris filix - mas


That was it! Hopefully I was able to inspire you to try out some new garden plants :) Love, Linda

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