Friday, June 27, 2014

My favorite plant this week: Anagallis 'Wildcat Mandarin'

Anagallis monelli, with its intense blue flowers, seems to be relatively well known, although I only became acquainted with it last year.  I came across a hybrid, Anagallis 'Wildcat Mandarin,' on a nursery tour of Carpinteria, California in March of this year and picked up 6 plants in 4-inch pots for the new border my husband and I had created as an extension of the small bed around our fountain.  Developed and patented by the University of New Hampshire, A. 'Wildcat Mandarin' are sold under the Proven Winners name as an annual but they're technically classified as a tender perennial.  Whether they'll last beyond this year remains to be seen but I'm very happy with how they've performed thus far.






They're not tall.  They're said to grow 6-12 inches (15-30 cm) high but mine are at the shorter end of that spectrum.  They make a good filler between plants, spreading farther than the 10-14 inches (25-36 cm) described on the label even after I trimmed back the trailing stems to encourage the plants to bush out some.  In my garden, they complement the Abelia x grandiflora 'Kaleidoscope' and Digiplexis 'Illumination Flame' grown nearby.

The flowers are relatively small but plentiful.  The plants are self-cleaning, making deadheading unnecessary.  They have flowered without a pause since they were planted and proved their heat tolerance during our May heatwaves.




There's not a lot of information available on the plant on-line.  Most of the sellers report the same statistics.  When scanning pictures of the plants I Googled on-line I was surprised to find that quite a few came from my own blog, including pictures of 2 bouquets in which I used the flowers.  (I'd only remembered using it once.)  I can attest to the fact that it performs well as a cut flower accent in a vase.

Bouquet posted April 28th showing Anagallis with a rose, Tagetes lemonii, and Abelia 'Kaleidoscope'

Bouquet posted May 26th, shwoing Anagallis with Digiplexis 'Illumination Flame,' Tanacetum parthenium, and Leucadendron salignum 'Chief'


This little powerhouse plant is my contribution to Loree's regular feature on favorite plants at danger garden.  Please click here to see her favorite this week.  You'll also find links to other contributing gardeners' posts.  Post a description of your favorite plant this week if you have one and link up.


15 comments:

  1. Oh, I love this, another one to look for at the nursery. I adore those colors! You're right, the magenta center on the orange flowers makes it a perfect accent to Digiplexis. I'm thinking of bringing my Digiplexis in for the winter, which leads me to wonder if it's worth it trying to overwinter this Anagallis too.

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    1. Despite its strong colors, the Digiplexis meshes well with a number of flowering plants, doesn't it? I almost paired it with Leonotis leonurus when I prepared my bouquet for last Monday's post.

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  2. I've never seen it, it looks very decorative :) I'd like to have it in my garden.

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    1. I'm sure it'll make its way to Europe at some point, Dewberry.

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  3. The orange is a great accent color. I remember the bouquets because the colors work together so beautifully.

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    1. While I used a lot of pastels in my former, shady garden, this garden seems to call for bright colors - it's dominated by orange, yellow and other sunshine colors now.

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  4. How could one not love those orange flowers!

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    1. It definitely drew my eye the first time I saw it at that nursery!

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  5. Very pretty! I love that last bouquet - the leucadendron looks fabulous cut!

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    1. I always hesitate to cut too much of any of the Leucadendron, Amy, but they do work well in a vase.

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  6. They look great. Good with that wonderful Abelia. I'm impressed. I went with the blue ones--just cannot resist blue.

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    1. I had the blue ones last year - I'm missing them now, even while enjoying the orange ones.

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  7. I read your first sentence while scanning the photo below and immediately became concerned with my inability to see blue. Duh, slow down Loree! I love color of these, such a cheerful orange they'd make even a cloudy day bright. Oh and that last vase combination, lovely.

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    1. I imagine you're in hyper-drive right now, Loree. I hope you're able to breathe and enjoy all the upcoming garden events.

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  8. Great choice for a favourite plant of the week; I'd love to have some here.

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