Saturday, June 9, 2012

'Bella Blue'

Day 139
The Daily DuBrule

I am a sucker for any plant named Bella. I have a cat named Bella who would melt your heart if she ever let you get near her. She was adopted as a tiny kitten after being found under a car. We call her our "special needs cat" as she is a nervous Nelly. My husband and I have figured out how to make her very happy and she is the light of our lives.

Back to 'Bella Blue'. This is a new Prunella grandiflora, a plant that is so ignored in my field that I was stunned to not only see this offered by one of my growers, I was also very pleased to see what the breeders have done to make this plant much more garden worthy. You may recognize this perennial, as Prunella vulgaris is a weed in some gardens, with pale pink spikes about an inch tall. 'Bella Blue' has deep purple flower spikes 15-18" tall and will repeat bloom throughout the summer.

I discovered Prunella grandiflora decades ago, and even used to talk about it in my perennial garden design classes as a long bloomer. Then it dropped from the radar screen of all of the growers and no one seemed at all interested. It is really hardy and easy to grow and durable for sun or partial shade. 

My Bella
Prunella also sounds like one of Cinderella's ugly stepsisters. An unfortunate name for quite a cute little plant.  

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