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Fond thoughts of grandmother's garden remind us of different forms of old-fashioned tansy. This large, diverse group includes painted daisies, always popular as border and cut flowers, and feverfew that makes such a charming neat edging. All have finely cut leaves and daisy-like flowers with or without rays. Some mat-forming sorts can grace the rock garden, while others have a place in herb and medicinal gardens. Full sun or very lightly shaded places where the soil drains well pleases most. Deadhead routinely for longer bloom time, or to control self-seeding (especially on feverfew).
Part Sun, Sun
Under 6 inches to 3 feet
8-18 inches wide, depending on variety
how to grow Painted daisy
Flowers can be harvested as they develop in summer. Hang the stems upside down in a dark, well-ventilated location to dry. The blooms also make long-lasting cut flowers. Dried tansy leaves can be mixed with dried artemisia and ground cloves to make a natural moth-repellent sachet blend for closets or dresser drawers.
garden plans for Painted daisy
more varieties for Painted daisy
Brenda painted daisy
Tanacetum coccineum 'Brenda' has long-stemmed cerise daisy flowerheads that are excellent as cut flowers in summer. The finely cut foliage grows 2 1/2 feet tall and has a feathery appearance. Zones 5-9.
Tanacetum parthenium 'Plenum' is a double form of common feverfew. It bears clusters of white flowers with numerous petals all summer long. It grows 2 feet tall. Zones 4-9
Tanacetum vulgare 'Isla Gold' shines in perennial borders with its fernlike golden foliage. Although it produces buttonlike yellow flower clusters in summer, you may want to shear them off to allow the foliage to take center stage. This herb grows 24-30 inches tall and wide. Zones 4-9
Tanacetum parthenium bears daisy-like flowers throughout the summer. The plant grows 2 feet tall. Zones 4-9
Tanacetum vulgare is a vigorous perennial that tolerates almost any kind of soil. It grows best in full sun but tolerates part shade. In mid- to late summer it bears buttonlike yellow flowers on its deep green foliage. Blooms attract butterflies. Plants grow 3-4 feet tall and wide. Zones 4-9
plant Painted daisy with
It's tough to find a perennial with truer blue flowers than bugloss. A beautiful plant with a less-than-beautiful name, bugloss can be short-lived but readily reseeds as long as you refrain from deadheading for a while after it blooms. However, deadheading will prolong blooms, so you'll have a choice to make.By late summer, the coarse, hairy leaves often look tired and tattered, so cut them back hard after bloom to reinvigorate plants.
The inflated buds of balloon flowers are fun to pop. And they make great cut flowers. Cut them in the bud stage, and sear the base of the stems to prevent the milky sap from seeping out and fouling the water.Most commonly available in blue-violet, balloon flowers also come in pink and white, as well as shorter forms that are better suited for rock gardens and containers. In fall, the foliage of balloon flower turns clear gold, so don't cut the plant down too early -- enjoy the show! They tolerate light shade, but not wet feet or drought.
Phlox are one of those bounteous summer flowers any large sunny flowerbed or border shouldn't be without. There are several different kinds of phlox. Garden and meadow phlox produce large panicles of fragrant flowers in a wide assortment of colors. They also add height, heft, and charm to a border. Low-growing wild Sweet William, moss pinks, and creeping phlox are effective as ground covers, at the front of the border, and as rock and wild garden plants, especially in light shade. These native gems have been hybridized extensively especially to toughen the foliage against mildew problems; many recent selections are mildew-resistant. Phlox need amply moist soil for best overall health.