Verbascum chaixii: - Nettle
Leaved Mullein - Summer flowering
Perennial for dry sunny position; yellow or white blooms on
tall spikes; height to 3ft (1m); semi or fully evergreen foliage
resembling nettles; flower spikes have white downy covering.
The Verbascum group of plants are mainly perennials or
biennials – generally with tall
central flower spikes. These spikes of flower on some Verbascum types
can reach well over 6ft (2m) and in some instances tower up to 8ft
(2.4m). Not all Verbascums hold such lofty positions. Some of the more
popular types – such as Verbascum chaixii are clad with masses of
flower towers no more than 1m tall.
Most garden soils are suitable as long as free draining. The
chaixii group of Verbascum is an ideal plant for the dry garden or
bank and match in well with many of the
Verbascum chaixii is an evergreen perennial – or sometimes semi-evergreen, which if planted in the right conditions will persist for many years, unlike some of the Verbascum family that are often generally short lived perennials – best treated as biennials. It does not have the silver downy foliage of some of the tall types; it has nettle-like leaves - though not stinging or otherwise a problem - hence its common name of Nettle Leaved Mullein.
There is also a white-flowered type of Verbascum chaixii f. album, having white or very pale pink flowers with an attractive centre of purple or mauve.
Both types are suitable and restrictive enough to be used in beds of annuals and also planted in large containers.
Verbascum chaixii are ideal plants for dry areas in full sun and can be planted – along with most other perennials and shrubs that have grey, silver, or downy foliage – in those conditions. Plant Verbascum in your poorest patch of soil - preferably alkaline, certainly not prone to water-logging and you will be rewarded with notable displays of tall spire-like blooms.
Many people notice their first Verbascum, when it is growing happily on a roadside verge, dry bank or even a heap of mature builder’s rubble. That’s how little care and attention they need! If you are a habitual ‘waterer’ then Verbascum is not your ideal plant.
Most grow to maximum height of 3ft – having many flower spikes and quite long flowering periods throughout the summer and into the early autumn. The taller Verbascums generally have single central columnar flower stems; the shorter perennial Verbascum chaixii and it ‘Album’ form types have several if not many such floral spikelets.
Full sun, poor soil which is well drained and lack of loving care are the main requirements. Plant as such, and simply enjoy the display.
No severe problems or pests, though powdery mildew can be present. As the plant prefers hot dry conditions this is less than likely.
Root cuttings in the winter months or early spring or normal division of ageing plants will keep them healthy – and provide additional true to form and colour additions.
Seed can be saved and sown in late spring, taking care to ‘nurture’ the young plants through their first winter.
Learn - all aspects of lawn maintenance, how to build and maintain a pond, care and grow vegetables and fruit, fit for your table.
Identify Weeds in The Garden - How to deal with weeds. Diseases and Pest which harm your garden and plants, learn how to prevent, deter and erradicate your garden problems.
Pruning Guide. Shrubs flower better with correct pruning. Many illustrations and examples of what to do - and when. Includes evergreens, roses, flowering shrubs, spring flowering shrubs and pruning for stem effect. This is our most viewed and comprehensive section,Pruning
Gardening Businesses listed in the UK counties and USA states. County and State Listings of businesses involved in Garden supplies and services. If you wish to be added to the Directory, please send us your information. Having problems, use the search boxBusinesses
In this section you will learn about Gardening Basics, Containers, Landscaping, Propagation and Soil.
Our top Viewed Pages