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Blue Anemones : Easy Spring Flowers

Updated on August 18, 2014

The Lovely Blue Anemone Blanda Is Really Easy To Grow

Blue anemones are the real stars in my spring garden. Every year, rain or shine these lovely little daisy like flowers come up in early spring, and then just keep on flowering for weeks and weeks untill the weather starts to get warm. Then they disappear without a trace until the following spring, just when I'm longing to see some flowers again.

I can't remember the year I planted my blue anemones; it's certainly some time ago now and I only remember exactly where they are in the garden when their fresh green ferny leaves start to come up in early March. Suddenly I'll see a pretty blue daisy and then gradually more and more will appear as the flowers just keep coming throughout April and into May.

At some point they fade away. By that time I'm usually caught up in the sudden rush of emerging weeds and I forget all about them again. For the rest of the year I don't give them a second thought; they really are the most trouble free, easy flowers to grow in the garden!

Image: Anemone blanda Blue Shades and White Splendour in my garden in spring.

Anemones Blandas Naturalise Well Under Trees And Shrubs

Anemone blanda growing under trees in Sachsen, Saxony, a state inside Germany close to Bavaria by Hedwig Storch (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Anemone blandas don't mind shade so they flourish happily under trees and shrubs. Like most plants they find conditions under evergreen trees and shrubs challenging due to the constant lack of sun and very dry conditions, but under deciduous trees and shrubs they grow well. The leafless conditions of winter allow for rainfall and the dappled light of summer seems to suit them well.

I grow some at the base of my apple trees, and the combination of pink apple blossom and blue daisies is really pretty.

Anemone Blandas Also Look Great In Pots And Window Boxes

Image : Anemone blanda, Muscari latifolia and Primulas and Buxus sempervirens in a window box / Greenspirit

Blue Anemones are lovely plants to include in spring bedding displays because they are so easy and have such good manners. They don't crowd out the other plants with masses of leaves before and after flowering like Grape Hyacinths and Narcissus do. That means the display continues to look good before, during and after they have made their appearance.

Their colour is another plus. I love to see blue flowers in the garden and blue seems to go with pretty well every thing. Blue anemones complement the pink blossom of cherry and apple trees beautifully and combined with white flowers they look really fresh and vibrant. You can also put them with yellows and oranges to get a really a bright and cheerful spring flower display.

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An Anemone blanda in the Balkans by Hedwig Storch (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

How To Grow Blue Anemones In The Garden

These little bulbs are very accomodating.

Anemone blandas are incredibly easy going plants. They will grow in acid, neutral and alkaline soil, in sun and shade, and cope with dry summers and very cold winters.

These anemones do love soil that is enriched with leaf mould or compost, and when they get that, they reward you with a stunning display and multiply with great abandon.

The one thing they really do need in order to survive is a 'free draining soil'. That means a soil that doesn't stay soggy after rainfall. You can test this by digging a small hole in your soil, filling it with water and then watching what happens.

If the hole remains full of water or takes hours to drain away then you know that you don't have free draining soil. If that's the case, unless you are into heavy soil improvement and drainage measures, the best thing to do is grow your anemones in pots instead

Blue Anemones In The Spring Garden

image: Greenspirit

Buy Blue Anemones Here

There are lots of different Anemones that grow around the temperate parts of the world. These blue anemones are called Anemone blanda.

The tubers of these anemones always look like shrivelled up lumps of mud so don't be alarmed when they arrive. They will look completely unlike other bulbs you buy but the only real problem with their unpromising appearance is that you can easily lose them if you drop them by accident on the soil of your garden. You have been warned.

How To Plant Anemone Blanda Tubers

STORING: When you get hold of some little knobbly anemone tubers, don't worry that you have to plant them immediately. If you do need to keep the tubers unplanted for any length of time, make sure you remove them from any plastic packaging.

In my experience they keep for months if kept in a dry, moderately cool place and stored loose in a paper bag. Having said that, I planted some that had lain all year in my greenhouse through frost and heatwave. They did flower, but maybe I was lucky and I wouldn't recommend it as a good practice.

PREPARING THE TUBERS : The tubers need to soak for a few hours in warm (not hot) water, as they are rock hard and this will kick off the growing stage.

PREPARING THE GARDEN SOIL : If planting in the garden, loosen the the soil by forking to 10" and add some leaf mould or compost and mix well in.

PREPARING COMPOST FOR POTS : If planting in pots make up a gritty compost by mixing up 75% potting compost and 25% sharp sand together.

PLANTING : Plant the tubers 3-4 times their depth. Don't worry about which way is up or down: you can't tell and it really doesn't matter.

AFTERCARE : Water the ground and pots after planting. You will need to continue watering the pots if they get dry, but it's less likely you will need to water anemones planted in the ground unless there is a really unseasonally hot and dry spell during the growing season. Apart from that I tend to leave the garden ones to completely fend for themselves apart from the general autumn mulch that the whole garden gets anyway.

The pot grown ones do need more care. I continue to water them as long as the green leaves show after the plant has finished flowering. After that, I tend to take out the tired bedding plants like pansies and primulas, and put in new things for the summer.

If I can, I leave the now dormant anemones undisturbed, and just replace the soil above them and plant over the top of them. That way they benefit from the water and feed that I give to my summer bedding and then pop up again next spring.

Both pots and soil grown plants will benefit from a mulch with organic matter in the autumn

Anemone blanda in the Botanical Garden of the Goethe University Frankfurt : Marco Schmidt [1] (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Where These Little Sweeties Come From

Anemones are part of the big family of plants known as the Ranunculaceae or Buttercup family. There are around 120 different kinds of Anemone and most are native to the Northern Hemisphere and the temperate areas of the world.

The lovely Anemone blanda can be found growing naturally and wild in southeastern Europe, the Lebanon, and Syria, but it is with Greece that it is most associated. Elsewhere it occurs as a garden plant or as a mysterious arrival by undetermined means.

The Beautiful Blue Anemone

A blue anemone growing in a garden in Stevenage, England, by anemoneprojectors

By Hedwig Storch (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons


The images in this work are available for commercial use and reproduction by kind permission and under the terms and conditions contained in this Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

I Love To Hear From My Readers - Tell me about Your Garden Flowers!

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    • mrdata profile image

      mrdata 4 years ago

      Anemones look lovely... Thanks for your great lens!

    • Monika Weise profile image

      Monika Weise 4 years ago from Indianapolis, IN USA

      Anemones were beautiful. My dad had some in his garden.

    • peterb6001 profile image

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      I'm seeing lots of cherry blossom at the moment on the streets and daffodils. These little blue anemones are lovely but I haven't noticed any. Will have to keep an eye out for them.

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 4 years ago from Scotland

      these Blue Anemones are gorgeous, and would fit perfectly into my purple/blue garden. most of all I love the photos on your page :)

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