First, the Amsonia. The parent species is a native of the United States all too rarely seen over here: Blue Ice is a spectacular plant with erect stems clothed in dark green willowy leaves and, in early summer, clouds of starry blue flowers. It puts on a second star turn in the autumn when the foliage colours golden yellow. We have grown other Amsonias before and are particularly fond of A. Hubrichtii. But this is a nice one too, staying on the compact side at around 18 in.
Late-flowering Japanese anemones bring fresh colour to late summer and autumn with their delicate cup-shaped flowers. Rotkäppchen (or Red Riding Hood, as you may know her) has semi-double dark rosy pink flowers, probably the deepest of any anemone. For a number of years we grew the rather similar Pamina and probably sold more of that variety than any other Japanese anemone. We expect Rotkäppchen will be equally popular.
This next one is a bit of a cheat really, as we were selling Anemone Andrea Atkinson at the end of last season. But it is new to the RHS Plant Finder list for 2014, so that’s our excuse for including it here. The lovely Andrea forms a strong bushy plant and sports beautiful single pure white blooms. In some profusion, it has to be said, and over a long flowering period: we were mightily impressed by her performance compared with other whites we have grown in the past.