The Anemone: small in size, large in presence

Three anemones

There are many anemone species, but three are indispensable in the garden. These are the Grecian windflower (Anemone blanda), the Wood anemone (Anemone nemorosa) and the Yellow wood anemone (Anemone ranunculoides). Their sparkling little daisy-like flowers, just 2 inches across, seem to smile up at us. They make fine ground-covering plants with their white, pink, blue and yellow flowers. Try looking for large areas of color on the forest floor in early spring. If you find one, it’s a good chance that what you’re seeing are anemones growing in their natural habitat.

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A carpet of flowers

Would you like to enjoy anemones in your own garden? Now that’s a good idea! Anemones make perfect garden plants. If you plant them now, you can enjoy them for a long time: from early March until late in April. Surprise yourself by planting them in small groups. Your reward will be a wonderful carpet of flowers in the border. And did you know that these cheerful little plants will also naturalize? This means that not only will they produce flowers year after year but that your carpet of flowers will also increase in size because there will be more plants every year. Not bad for such diminutive plants.

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Interesting facts about anemones

  • Grecian windflowers and Yellow wood anemones are related to the equally cheerful Persian buttercup.
  • After flowering, the plants disappear and won’t be seen above the ground until early next spring.
  • These blithe spring-flowering plants reach a height of 6-8 inches.
  • Anemone varieties have been developed to produce several kinds of flowers: double-flowering, single-flowering and ones with extra-large flowers.
  • Did you know that their flowers always face the sun to soak up as much spring warmth as they can?
  • The most familiar Grecian windflower is Anemone blanda ‘Blue Shades’. Yes, its flowers really are a beautiful blue.