WHO’S WHO AMONG THE
Too perfect for a
life so brief
Seemed every star and bud and bell.
— Celia Thaxter.
feeling that annuals do not quite “belong” in the sense that the
regular inhabitants of the garden do is perhaps an unjust one, but to
this sentiment toward them I must plead guilty. Their reappearance in
our midst is entirely a matter of our whim, while the hardy herbaceous
plants, save in case of death, accident, or misbehaviour, are sure to
greet us from their accustomed places every spring. I love the gay
summer visitors, but do not want too many of them at once. They give to
the garden a fugitive, unstable quality, like that felt in cities where
every one lives in an apartment and moves at least once a year, and
there are no old families, or traditions, nor anything comfortably
familiar and just as it has always been. Many annuals do their best to
overcome their transitory nature by sowing their seeds broadcast,
which, in the case of hardy annuals, come safely through the winter and
are on hand with the perennials to meet the spring, not, however, in
their proper places, but all over the garden, with a naïve disregard
for the premises of old settlers, and creating havoc in various of our
cherished colour schemes. In our garden the English Field Poppy is a
great offender along this line. It has not been planted here for years,
but every summer a scarlet tide rises upon the garden, holding sway for
almost two weeks, when, “like fires extinguished by the rain,” it is
gone. Each year I say it shall not happen again, for they mean the
destruction of many a choice colour arrangement, but not yet have I
been able to resist their blithe clamour, or their flattering
assumption of the quality of mercy in me, which assures their safety,
even in the midst of the pink Pyrethrums.
Cornflowers, Love-in-a-mist, Linaria, California Poppies, Sweet
Sultans, Erysimums, Annual Anchusa, Balsams, Marigolds, Nicotiana,
Snapdragons, Mignonette, Candytuft, and Poppies of all sorts are among
those that do their best to become permanent residents, and these
seedlings, being available so early in the year, are very handy for
filling the places of such recalcitrant perennials as may have taken
themselves off during the winter. Indeed this is one of the important
uses of annuals. No winter passes but takes its toll of “hardy” plants,
and we have not always others to take their places, or do not care to
go to the expense of buying, so that we should be grateful to this
class of flowers that will, for five or ten cents, cover the
distressing blanks with loveliness. Biennials, too, leave spaces behind
them to be filled, and there are also the bulb borders and beds.
Annuals are splendid
for cutting, inexpensive, present a wide range of colour, form, and
fragrance, germinate and develop quickly, and bloom with prodigal
generosity, all of which are good reasons for having plenty, but not in
the flower garden proper — a few used as fillers-in, or to create some
special effect, and the rest in a space set apart for cutting. The
kitchen garden is usually the most convenient place.
Annuals are known as
hardy, half-hardy, and tender. In milder climates than ours many hardy
annuals are sown in autumn, and while we may meet with some success
with this method it is never a certainty, and I think that March and
early April planting of hardy annuals out of doors, or February
planting indoors, will prove more satisfactory. Half-hardy and tender
annuals may be sown out of doors about the time the farmers are
planting corn, or may be started under glass in February, which, in the
case of tender annuals, is a great advantage, as it gives them a start
ahead of the drought that often gives them such a setback as to leave
them permanently stunted. It is really important to know this
difference between hardy and tender sorts, for an early sowing outdoors
of tender annuals will result in complete loss, while a too late sowing
of hardy kinds will just as certainly end in failure.
This class of plants
is as impatient of neglect and adverse conditions as any other, though
an impression seems to exist to the effect that a little scratching of
the soil and scattering of seed is all that is necessary where annuals
are concerned. But this is by no means the case, and they are quite as
capable of sulking and presenting a spindling, half-clothed appearance
when not suited as their betters in higher circles, and they always
repay intelligent attention. In the first place, they are nearly all
sun worshippers; there are very few that will endure shade; also they
are a thirsty lot and want moisture, but require a well-drained soil,
deeply dug, and only moderately rich with manure. Each plant must have
plenty of room to develop, and too much stress cannot be put upon this
point. Especially where seed is sown where it is to remain, and comes
up thickly, unmerciful thinning must be done, or a very poor showing
will be the result. It is economy to buy only the best seeds, and
better effects will be achieved if seeds are bought only in separate
colours and varieties. The mixed packet is better let alone. A long
period of bloom is assured if no seed is allowed to form, for annuals
are among those gracious beings who, the more you take from them, the
more they have to give. A pinch of superphosphate, given to each little
plant when set out and the ground kept cultivated and moist, will mean
a rich and speedy reward.
For planting among
the perennials I think the following are the twelve best annuals:
Sweet-sultan, Wallflower, Marigold, Zinnia, China Aster, Clarkia,
Nigella, Nicotiana, Star Chrysanthemum, and Salvia Bluebeard.
A dozen sorts good
for edging are these:
Sweet Alyssum, Candytuft, Dwarf Nasturtiums, Chinese and Japanese
Pinks, French Marigolds, Silenes, Phlox Drummondii, Nemophila,
Convolvulus minor, Sanvitalia procumbens, and
There are so many
annuals that it would be impossible to speak of all, and so in the
following notes I have chosen only those which, after several seasons’
trial in the gardens here, have proven their usefulness in our dry
The letters h. a.,
h.h.a., and t.a., stand for hardy, half-hardy, and tender annuals.
maritimum, h. a., six inches to
one foot. Sweet Alyssum.
The compact, dwarf varieties, such as Little
Gem, are the best for edging. Comes into bloom very early
and continues until after hard frost. Best sown where it is to flower.
Anagallis arvensis var. caerulea,
h. h. a., six to eight inches. Pimpernel.
A charming little sky-blue flowered plant, which makes pretty sky-like
patches along the front of the border. Best started under glass and set
out in May.
Anchusa capensis, h. a., eighteen
inches. Cape Forget-me-not.
Branching growth and pretty forget-me-not-like flowers borne all the
summer and autumn. Nice for cutting
and very pretty in the borders. Good drought resister.
Argemone mexicana, h. a., three feet.
Bears lovely white crêpe poppy-like
flowers, with conspicuous golden stamens. Foliage gray and prickly. Too
free a seeder to be admitted to choice situations, but splendid for
waste places, where it perpetuates itself. There is a pale-yellow sort.
Asperuta azurea var. setosa,
h. a., one foot. Blue Woodruff.
A charming responsive little plant, which cheerfully defies the drought
and puts up, if necessary, with a poor soil and shade. Bears heads of
clear lavender-blue flowers on stiff stems. Leaves in whorls.
hortensis, h. h. a., six inches
to three feet. China Aster.
Beautiful and indispensable flowers for the late summer and autumn, the
seeds of which are best started indoors, or in a frame, and planted out
in May when all danger from frost is past. They like a light soil,
deeply dug and well manured, and should be watered in dry weather.
There are many fine
types. I like best the tall branching sorts known as Giant Comet,
Ostrich Feather, and Peony, which grow as tall as twenty inches. The
Victoria Asters are pyramidal in shape and bear countless blossoms with
overlapping, recurved petals. There is another beautiful sort of rather
recent introduction, with narrow “channelled” petals that are twisted.
Single-flowered Asters have lately come into favour and are very
pretty. The prettiest colours are shell-pink, pale lavender, white, and
We tried last year,
with great success, a very weak
solution of Paris Green for the voracious aster beetle. It did not
injure the plants and was fatal to the beetle.
Antirrhinum Majus, h. a., six inches to
three feet. Snapdragon.
These are the best and most invaluable of annuals. In mild climates and
occasionally here in sheltered places, or in the joints of walls, they
are perennial. For early bloom the seeds should be started under glass
in February and March. They flower all summer and autumn and cover the
widest range of colour. The flame-coloured ones are particularly
splendid, and also those described as “apricot” and “chamois-rose.”
Shell-pink and coral-pink, “old” pink and rose are lovely, also the
pure white, blood-red, and clear yellow. They come in three heights;
tall, medium, and dwarf. The medium sorts are the best for general
purposes. The dwarf kinds are most satisfactory for the joints of walls
and may be used for edgings though they are rather stiff for this
h. a., two feet.
Lady Slipper, Balsam.
The Camelia-flowered sorts are the best and come in clear colours:
salmon-rose, scarlet, and pure white. If inclined to grow “leggy,”
instead of compact, the tops may be nipped off. They are among the
flowers that find it difficult to maintain their improved state and are
forever slipping back into their former condition of magenta clothes
and poor figures, so self-sown seedlings should not be allowed to live.
iberidifolia, h. h. a., six
inches. Swan River Daisy.
Refined little plants, with many blossoms resembling a Cineraria —
clear lavender with a black and white central disc. The plant is rather
frail and is comfortable with some light twigs placed in front of it.
It makes a pretty edging for a summer border.
Browallia elata, h. a., one foot.
These form trim little bushes covered with blue or white flowers over a
long period. They endure drought with fortitude.
Campanula attica, h. h. a., three
A wee, blue-belied mite, best suited to a rock garden or a stone-edged
border, where its roots may find shelter and moisture among the stones.
Celosia, t. a., eighteen
I cannot profess to any great enjoyment in the great flowers of the
Cockscomb, though they make good masses of colour in various shades of
red, scarlet, salmon, and there is a good old gold sort. The
“feathered” and “plume” varieties are better and less realistic than
the “crested.” They should be started indoors.
Centaurea, h. a., Knapweed.
In this family are several very good annuals, best known among which is
cyanus, the friendly little Cornflower of so true a blue. Once planted
in the garden one will find the pleasant tufts of leaves every year,
for the seed is very hardy and this simple flower desires greatly to
stay among the “regulars.” There are pink and white sorts, but these
are rather faded looking. A double sort is very pretty.
imperialis (Sweet Sultan) is
one of the most beautiful of annuals, bearing, until frost,
long-stemmed, fragrant flowers, in shades of mauve, purple, and white —
unrivalled for cutting. They grow about two feet tall and love a sunny
situation. They resent disturbance and so should be sown where they are
to flower, and well thinned to insure perfect development.
americana (American Basket
Flower) is less well known, but is an extremely handsome plant with
large, beautiful lavender flowers.
Cheiranthus, h. a., eighteen
Sweet and homely is the yellow wallflower “stained with iron-brown.”
The annual variety known as “Parisian extra early,” if sown under glass
in March, will bloom all summer and autumn and provide many a nosegay
of deliciously scented flowers. There are all shades of yellow, red,
Chrysanthemum, h. a.
Among Annual Chrysanthemums those known as the “star-group” are the
finest: Morning Star, Evening Star, Eastern Star, and Northern Star.
They make bushy plants about eighteen inches high, and bear many large
daisy-like flowers in shades of yellow and orange. They are long
stemmed, and good for cutting and last well in water. Another good sort
is C. inodorum plenissimum. var.
Bridal Robe, which grows eighteen inches tall and is covered with snowy
bloom. Lord Beaconsfield and Chamelion, which bear handsome crimson and
gold flowers, are also useful. The Chrysanthemums are easy of culture,
asking only full sunshine and a good rich soil.
Clarkia elegans, h. a., two and a
Attractive, branching plants, carrying well-clothed flower spikes of
scarlet, salmon-pink, or white. These flowers are very beautiful, and
in good soil and sunshine will bloom all summer if not allowed to seed.
Convolvulus minor, eight inches, h. a.,
Dwarf Morning Glory.
It is impossible to imagine anything much prettier than the wide,
blue-eyed C. tricolour with white throat and yellow decorations. These
baby Morning Glories stay wide open all day and make nice little
spreading bushes, very pretty and useful along the front of the
borders. Sow where they are to flower. They bloom all summer.
Cosmos, t. a., six feet.
This is the tallest and latest flowering annual. The seed is best
started indoors and set out when danger of frost is past in good soil
and a sheltered position, giving each plant several feet of room for
development. The lovely flowers are pink, rose, and white. The variety
known as Lady Lenox is a lovely pink and very large flowered, and there
is also a white Lady Lenox.
Delphinium, h. a., three feet.
Invaluable plants for cutting, as well as for garden decoration. The
long spikes of flowers are pink, rose, lavender, purple, and white.
They are best sown very early in spring where they are to flower, and
well thinned when an inch or so high. There are various forms, but I
think the “tall branched” is the best.
Dianthus Chinensis, h. a., six to twelve
inches. Indian Pink.
Floriferous little plants, jewel-like in their brilliance and with the
charm common to all Pinks. They are lovely for edging and come in many
good varieties. Crimson Belle is a very bright single; Purity, a lovely
double white; Fireball, double and very bright; Mourning Cloak is
double and dark crimson strikingly edged with white. Salmon Queen,
which may be had either single or double, is a beautiful colour, and
Lucifer is a splendid new sort with dazzling scarlet flowers with
fringed edges. Often these plants will survive a winter and bloom early
the following spring.
aurantiaca, twelve to fifteen
inches, h. h. a. Namaqualand Daisy.
This gorgeous South African is a newcomer to our gardens and is so good
that it bids fair to make some of the old sorts look to their laurels.
The great daisy-like flowers are a beautiful warm salmon-orange in
colour, with a black central ring. It blooms all summer and seems
oblivious to drought. H started outdoors, early May is time enough.
h. a., eighteen
inches. Alpine Wallflower.
This and E. Peroskianum are lovely
annuals, bearing their gay yellow or orange
flowers all summer if not allowed to go to seed. They are much like
Wallflowers and are fragrant.
Eschscholtzia, h. a., six to eight
inches. California Poppy.
Prettiest and gayest of annuals, with finely cut gray foliage and
cup-shaped flowers in every delectable shade of cream, orange, scarlet,
yellow, and soft yellowy-salmon. They adore the sun and scorn the
drought and have no bad traits of any sort. The hardy seed is fond of
roving and makes itself comfortable in the chinks of walls and steps
and in all sorts of seemingly unlikely places. There are many good
varieties but none any better than the common californica. Sow where
they are to flower.
Godetia, h. a., one to two
Cheerful flowers, generous in bloom if given a rich, dry soil, plenty
of air and sunshine, and room to develop. They may be planted out or
started indoors for earlier bloom. Prettiest in rather large groups of
one kind. Some good sorts are Lady Satin Rose, deep pink, one foot;
Duchess of Albany, pure white, one foot; Sunset, dwarf carmine; Crimson
King, one foot; Princess of Wales, Ruby-coloured pencilled with gray.
Gypsophila, h. a., eighteen
inches. Chalk Plant.
G. elegans is very useful for
cutting — somewhat resembling its perennial relation with cloudlike
masses of small white flowers.
muralis is a tiny plant only
a few inches tall, looking when in bloom like a wee sunset cloud. We
grow it here in the joints of steps and walls as it is too frail for
the open garden.
Helianthus, h. a., three to four
Some of the annual Sunflowers are very pretty, those known as C. cucumerifolius
in both single and
double forms are the best. Any situation where the sun shines is
comfortable for them.
Iberis, h. a., four to eight
These are charming for edgings or for spreading patches at the front of
the borders. The great white Empress is the handsomest, but the rose
and lilac sorts are pretty and the little old “sweet scented” is always
welcome. They may be planted outdoors where they are to grow.
lonopsidium acaule, h. a., three inches.
A diminutive little plant with tiny pale lavender or white flowers,
very lovely in the rockery, in the cracks between bricks or steps.
Self-sows freely. The seed is very small and should be lightly pressed
into the soil and not covered.
Lavatera tremestris var. rosea
splendens, h. h. a., three feet. Mallow.
This lovely Mallow loves a rich, deeply dug soil and a sunny exposure.
It is a large plant requiring room to develop, so the seedlings should
be thinned to eighteen inches apart. Sow in April where it is to flower
and water in dry weather.
hybridus, h. a., two to four
Gay little annuals too small and frail save for rockwork or the chinks
of walls, steps, etc. The foliage is threadlike. It is best in a
partially shaded situation and loves a loamy soil. Seeds should be
shown in March and early April where they are to grow.
Linaria, h. a., one foot.
The annual Toadflaxes are pretty enough to justify a few gay patches
along the edge of the borders. The blossoms are like small Snapdragons
and come in pretty soft shades.
Linum grandiflorum, h. h. a., twelve to
fourteen inches. Scarlet Flax.
This is a truly beautiful plant with delicate foliage and wine-red
blossoms. It does not bloom all summer, so I like to make two sowings,
as I do not like to be without it. It wants a sunny situation and good
soil and the seedlings should be severely thinned so as to induce a
bushy, self-supporting growth.
Lupinus, h. a., one to two
These are as beautiful as the perennial varieties. The tall spikes of
pea-like flowers come in various colours — all charming.
Menziesii forms a nice bush
eighteen inches high and bears lovely yellow flowers. L.
mutabilis, with pretty rose and white flowers, is charming,
also a variety of this called Cruickshanki with
blue, white, and yellow flowers. This grows four feet high. There is a
lovely white sort and one called hybridus
atro-coccineus with gay crimson flowers tipped with white
that is one of the best.
The large seeds
should be planted two inches below the surface of the soil where they
are to remain, in good soil and sunshine. In dry weather the plants
require liberal watering.
Marigold, h. a.
I like everything about this plant. His grand trumpeting colour, his
nice gig-saw foliage, his clean, pungent odour, and, most of all, his
kindly nature. This is a plain fellow, and plain living suits him best,
but once in a while my heart gets the better of my reason and I feed
him up a bit, but alas, right away he loses his head and sprawls all
over the place, his upstanding carriage gone and his great blossoms fit
to burst. I cannot imagine a garden without Marigolds, from the great
lemon and orange Africans to the debonair little French fellows in
brown and gold which are so neat and tidy and <span
style="font-family: "Times New Roman";">shining
along the edges
of the borders. They may be started under glass or sown out of doors
where they are to grow.
Matthiola, h. h. a., eighteen
to twenty-four inches. Stock, Gillyflower.
Lovely in form and foliage, colour and fragrance are the Ten Weeks
Stocks. Next to Snapdragons I think they are the best of annuals for
planting among perennials. There are various forms offered, all of
which are good; and the colours, buff, white, blush, pink, rose,
crimson, mauve, and purple are all pretty, but my own choice is for
double Stocks in the pale shades, white, buff, and tender pink. Seeds
may be planted out of doors when all danger of frost is past, but it is
more satisfactory to start them under glass and set the young plants
out in May.
bicornis is the Night-scented
Stock, a shy, inconspicuous little plant about a foot high, which
withholds its fine perfume from the day but pours it forth to the
night. It is pleasant to have a few patches of this stock about the
garden for the sake of its sweetness.
Nemesia, twelve to eighteen
These are charming flowers showing jewel-like colours and having a long
period of bloom. N. strumosa, Sutton’s
variety, is the finest strain. Blue Gem is a dwarfer sort with lovely
sky-blue flowers. In our climate Nemesias are started in flats or
frames in March to give them a good start ahead of dry weather. When
set out in the garden they will need five or six inches between them,
and if the central shoot is nipped off, a bushy, branching growth will
follow. A rich loam with the addition of a little wood ashes is the
best soil for them.
Nemophila insignis, h. a., three to four
inches. Love Grove.
A truly lovely little flower, sky-blue with a shining white eye. It
will do well anywhere in good soil, but in partial shade and soil, a
little damp, it creates a brave show indeed. For small beds and borders
no prettier edging could be had.
Nicotiana affinis, h. a., three feet.
Both this plant and the hybrid N. Sanderae, the
flowers of which are in shades of soft pink, are good annuals for our
dry climate and are striking enough to fill quite prominent places at
the back of the border. They bloom until after hard frost. The perfume
of the White Tobacco is very delicious at night and the tubular
blossoms have a shimmering quality which makes them very charming in
the moonlit garden.
Nigella damascena, h. a., eighteen
Of all blue annuals this is the bluest and the quaintest, the most old
fashioned and the prettiest. The variety named for Miss Jekyll is the
best and bluest and will bloom all summer long if seed does not form.
It dislikes transplanting, so should be sown where it is to flower and
thinned out to five inches apart. It is very charming planted near Gypsophila paniculata.
Papaver, h. a., Poppy.
These creations of heat and light, of silken gauze and crinkled crêpe,
have no peers for colour and texture in the floral kingdom. They are
like dainty bits of finery, and as such must we use them in the garden,
for their beauty is ephemeral and they leave sad blanks behind them.
One could hardly give a list of the best annual Poppies, for they are
many and all so lovely as to make choice difficult, but a few which
seem to me particularly beautiful are:
shades of mauve-pink, single; Danish Cross, striking scarlet and white,
single; Miss Sherwood, lovely salmon-pink and white, single; the Bride,
pure white, single; Dainty Lady, pinky-mauve, single, and the lovely
Shirleys, in all the finest shades of pink and scarlet. Besides the
single sorts are various double-flowered Poppies, like powder puffs and
globes of fringed petals. These are known as Carnation-flowered and
Paeony-flowered and may be had in as lovely shades as the singles.
It is my experience
that Poppy seed should be sown as early in the spring as possible, in
March or early in April, and it is well to choose a windless day as the
seed is very fine and will be blown in all directions, and it should be
sown very thinly where it is to remain.
Petunia, h. h. a.
has long filled a useful place in our gardens and is very pretty if care is used in selecting colours, for
some are not good. The soft
frilly white ones are the prettiest and are very nice along the edges
or for filling beds. Mr. Speer, in his fine book on Annuals, says,
the seeds by sowing on the surface of a compost of loam, leaf-mold, and
well-drained pans, in February or March in a temperature of 65
late May they may be set out in the garden, allowing each plant plenty
is a fine bushy little plant for the front of the border, with clear
bell-shaped flowers and gray-green foliage curiously marked with
claret. It may
be sown out of doors in early spring, and is grateful for good garden
Phlox Drummondii, t. a.
is an invaluable plant for edging as well as for beds, and comes in a
number of delightful colours. We raise them in the frames and set out
in May but
they may be sown late out of doors if so desired. They love a sunny
and a rich, well-drained soil and a pinch of lime given to each little
heartens them up greatly. If the plants are inclined to grow straggly
may be nipped off the leading shoots. They bloom all summer. Reseda, h. a., Mignonette.
garden would deserve the name without generous plantings of
Mignonette. With us it self-sows freely, and I am always grateful for
gratuitous patches of sweetness wherever they appear in the garden.
have Mignonette at its best the soil should be somewhat damp, but it
well enough under ordinary garden conditions. The seed may be sown out
early in April, and the young plants should be well thinned. Some of
varieties are Machet, Golden Machet, Defiance, Parson’s White, and
Salpiglossis t. a., two feet.
The blossoms of the Salpiglossis are
much like a
Petunia in shape, but there the resemblance ends, for few flowers
esthetic colour schemes — smoked pearl, soft amaranth, rose, burnished
delicate buff, and all with pencillings or flushes of deeper colour.
tender annuals, they are best started indoors and set out in late May
in a sunny
scarlet Salvia is too well known to need description. Its colour is the
difficult to harmonize and the most recklessly used in the floral
Divers coloured houses rise from the midst of its surrounding flames,
beds of it
break up many a fair stretch of lawn, and it utterly cows and
of less strong colour in its neighbourhood. It never tempts me, neither
Zurich, Bonfire, nor the rest, but they may easily be had by planting
indoors in February or March, or young plants may be purchased from any
The variety of Salvia horminum called Bluebeard is quite a different
rich blue-purple of its terminal bracts being long lasting and most
the garden. The seeds are hardy and may be sown out of doors very early.
small, indomitable trailer, quite smothered from early July until frost
tiny sunflower-like blossoms. The colour is a trifle raw, but the whole
so thrifty and cheerful that one cannot but enjoy it. Good for edging.
h. a., Soapwort.
plant is as cheerfully pink as the foregoing is cheerfully yellow and
it in its trailing habit. It resists dry weather very well, and where a
edging is wanted nothing could be prettier.
Scabiosa, h. a., Sweet Scabius.
is a popular and easily cultivated annual very nice for cutting as the
flower heads are borne on long stems and come in a large variety of
colours, among which may be found maroon so dark as to be almost black,
mauve, scarlet, pink, buff, white, and others. Fragrant.
rosea, h. a., four to six
is a nice little plant for edging, which, when covered with its bright
blossoms, is very gay and pretty indeed. If it is wanted all through
several sowings should be made.
are best started indoors and set in their permanent places in May. They
several nice colours, the salmon-pink being particularly pretty. If the
are pegged down with wire hairpins when they begin to “run,” they will
the ground closely and bloom until killed by frost. Verbenas like a
and full sun and will thrive where many a more thirsty plant will fail.
Zinnia, h. h. a., eighteen
inches to two feet.
Youth and Old Age. These are so often bought “mixed”
and present so garish an appearance
that many people are ignorant of the really fine effects to be gotten
obtained in separate colours and planted in harmonious groups. The
a curious lustreless quality to their colours which is rather
attractive and run
into all sorts of off shades which are useful. There is a pretty ashen
sort, a good bronzy yellow, a soft cream, a fine salmon, and a rich,
Plain food and full sun is all they require.
summer I tried in the nursery a number of these annual flowers, which,
account of their straw-like texture and keeping qualities, are called
“everlasting.” Many of them are quite pretty enough for garden
even though one does not care for the stiff bouquets for winter use. I
of these old-fashioned posies and like always to have a few. The
almost undimmed if the flowers are gathered just before they are fully
and hung head downward in a dry cool place. I remember, when a little
Baltimore, that in the open-air markets for which that city is justly
there were always several stalls devoted to the sale of Everlasting
Many of these were funeral wreathes and crosses, but others were the
elaborately arranged bouquets for the mantelpiece or centre table.
is the Immortelle of the French, the favourite flower for memorial
is very pretty indeed, being globular in form with crisp, incurving
comes in various colours, scarlet, salmon, russet, yellow, and a good
called Silver Queen. They self-sow in our garden so we are sure of one
bouquet at least.
is a half-hardy annual growing about two and a half feet tall bearing
flowers about an inch across in soft rose-lilac or white and with
foliage. The winged Everlasting, Ammobium
alatum, has small white flowers with a yellow centre and is
very quaint and
pretty. It is a hardy annual which blooms all summer long. Gnaphalium foetidum is also a hardy
annual and much like the
foregoing save as to colour which is yellow. Helipterum is yellow and
like the Helichrysums, but it loses its nice golden colour when dried
becomes rather a dull green.
Rhodanthes are extremely pretty with their pink blossoms pendent upon
stems. R. Manglesii, called the
River Everlasting, has charming rose-coloured rosettes with yellow
foliage of these plants is broad and pleasant and they grow about
inches high. They do not like to be moved, but as they are very tender
either be started indoors and transplanted with a ball of earth, or
sown out of
doors in May where they are to remain.
double flowers of Xeranthemum annuum are
particularly old-fashioned looking and rather sombre in their violet
colouring. They grow about two feet tall and may be sown out of doors
The Globe Amaranthe with its round, frankly magenta blooms is one of my
favourites. It blooms all summer long and the bunches of bright
are very cheery when the long white days are upon us. It may be sown
doors after danger from frost is past. The Everlastings are very
grown in association with the annual and perennial grasses.