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I have just come home from a wonderful, annual plant sale and have purchased the above plants.  If anyone can pass on their knowledge or pictures of these plants in flower, I would be very grateful.  I would love to see how they will look when they mature if they survive in our garden. Thanks.


Phlomis is lovely but I found it only lasted about 3 years in my garden and then turned its toes up. But I am in Scotland!  Is that the black grass, the Ophiopogon. I've not grown it but always admired it in the right setting. I think it looks good either in gravel or next to some lime green heucheras to set it off. 

Phlomis is a tallish perennial with whorls of pale lemon flowers going around the stem (there is also a pink variety).  Ophiopogon, although called the black grass, is actually a low-growing member of the lily family and will flower in the summer (small lilac coloured flowers). Both of these like to be in the sun.  Geranium himalayense will be blue, but could be any one of a number of named varieties. As with other hardy geranium, this will cope with shade. Sorry I can't send you pictures, but you will be able to find them on the internet.  Hope this helps and happy gardening!

Thanks Hogweed and Rosa.  I will do my best to keep these plants alive!  I didn't know that the Ophiopogon was a member of the lily family - I thought it was some type of grass/Carex perhaps.  It is a very dark green/almost black and I will be planting it around my pond, but the soil isn't moist or boggy due to the unusual construction.  I don't have much luck with these hardy perennial geraniums, but perhaps I will have more success with this one.

Thanks for your input.

Ophipogon also work well with house leeks - they enjoy the same conditions and if the HL's are mature they tend to flower at the same time. The O. spreads well when happy and I've also grown it in large containers with fuschias - they complement each other IMO. 



I find the Ophiopogon fades to green if not given enough sun.  It can look great in winter along with some snowdrops.


I grow Ophiopogon in a low pot along with Campanula Carpatica .


re Rosa glauca's comment. Phlomis russeliana is palish yellow. other colours are different species.

I find that one easy going, seeds and spreads by roots but not a problem. It seems to cope with anything.

Phlomis russeliana is a really good plant. Treat it well and let it grow into a nice big clump. The dead flower heads stand very well over winter if you leave cutting it down to the early spring.

I'm feeling confident after reading all your helpful growing tips with these three plants.  I will give the Phlomis russeliana plenty of room to mature into a clump and will try to remember to leave the deadheading until the early spring. Thanks for your input.

My ophiopogon doesn't get much sun, but still remains beautifully black and glossy.I use it as an "edger" to the path to my front door.In my experience it doesn't have to be in a particularly sunny spot.Lots of things self sow amongst it, and it looks great when forget me nots or pale pink alliums get all muddled up with it.

I only have the one small plant flowerlady but I must say your ophiopogon looks really at home in that setting. I love the way it just hangs  over the path, softening the edges. whilst still keeping it's shape.  It has given me the idea of putting it at the edge of the pond beach where it meets the gravel pathway.

Once our camera is up and running again (goodness knows when that will be), I will be able to post a picture of the plant.

You'll soon have lots of it. Spreads really well and quickly from little white creeping "tubercules". Also, I have found that after flowering (small white flowers) it produces perfectly circular black berries, which germinate pretty well if you give them a good squish first.

The top of the beach is about a foot wide, so I will plant it right in the middle and let it do it's natural flop over the sharp edge of the path and the softer looking beach - it should look good in a few months time.


We use Ophiopogon in much the same way as flowerlady3 (looks great!), as an edging to our raised veggie bed.  We give it minimal watering, although it does better in moist soil.  It is very expensive to buy, so I'd recommend dividing it every other year and you will end up with lots.


That looks neat KeenOnGreen.  I think the plant was a couple of pounds, but if we can divide it next Spring then I will make use of the divisions.


Phlomis is a cool plant GD2. Here's a couple of photos I took today of it at a wildlife garden in Bham.

It's spread a lot but they told me it isn't invasive. I also bought 3 seedlings in the plant sale .Not sure whether to plant all 3 together in a group or separately in3 different places in the flower bed.

Gosh, they look lush wakeshine - thanks for the pictures. It should look good in a year or two once established.  Fingers crossed.  I would plant them close together - I only have one plant and ones always look a bit "specimeny" to me, but I think that a group of three looks far more natural.


my ophiopogon recently planted by " The Rock 2" 

I'm not sure which I like best, the rock, the healthy hosta or the Ophiopogon, Hostafan.  The setting is just right for these plants.  I imagine that you garden is quite dry?