Monday, August 27, 2012

Gentiana andrewsii

Gentiana andrewsii blooming in my garden now
     I got a gentian a number of years ago but I have since lost track of both the name and where I got it from, although I may have gotten it from Kelly Dodson.  Anyway, it has been living in a partially shaded, but not especially moist part of my garden all these years.  I have pretty much neglected it, yet it blooms each year about this time with these beautiful blue balloon like flowers that never open any more than you see in the picture.  The plant itself without the flowers is rather nondescript, sending up stems (there are not very many stems on this plant) that are one to two feet tall.  When the plant blooms, the stems tend to fall over with the weight of the bloom.
     Since I decided to blog about this plant, I discovered that it is probably Gentiana andrewsii, a plant native to more easterly and cold parts of the U.S. than Washington state.  I also found that it grows in moist woods, thickets and low lying areas near streams and ponds. Also, if left alone in optimal growing conditions it is supposed to form large clumps.  That has not happened with my plant and I think the reason may be that I have it in too dry a spot.  I shall have to move it.
     In researching this plant I also found that it is offered for sale by Plant Delights Nursery.  I may have to order some so that I can increase the number of plants I have of this.  I hate to have only a singleton plant of anything worth growing, and I now conclude that is worth growing because of the shot of blue it gives to the garden in a season where blue in rare.

1 comment:

  1. What a gorgeous color of blue. I've never had any success with gentians but will have to give them a try again.