Perovskia 'Blue Spire'
The gardeners at Rosemoor love this small shrub because it can be used in so many planting combinations and, as long as it is pruned hard in early spring, it is easy to keep looking good.
With soft, violet-blue flowers and silver-grey leaves, this plant combines well with purples, lilacs, pinks and blues as in the long border at Rosemoor. Here we have planted it in a large group for impact with deep pink Stachys macrantha 'Superba', soft lilac pink Campanula lactiflora 'Loddon Anna' AGM and rosy Persicaria amplexicaulis 'Rosea'.
In the Spiral Garden, pink Sedum spectabile AGM, soft lavender blue Nepeta 'Six Hills Giant' and Aster ericoides 'Rosy Veil' make excellent planting companions. For contrast, Perovskia works well with yellows: in the West Country Town Garden Stachys byzantina 'Primrose Heron' forms a carpet of yellowish-green leaves and the more strident canary yellow flowers of Potentilla recta 'Warrenii' enhance the blue of the Perovskia flowers.
It also works well with grasses such as blue-grey leaved Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal' which gives a contrast in form.
- Common name
- Perovskia 'Blue Spire'
- Height & spread
- Up to 1.2m by 1m (4ft by 3ft)
- Deciduous subshrub
- Well-drained, poor to moderately fertile soil
- Full sun
- Hardy throughout the British Isles
This is a genus of seven species of deciduous subshrubs from rocky areas in Central Asia to the Himalaya. They make great garden plants because of their flowers and leaves, which are finely cut and deeply divided, grey-green and aromatic.
Perovskia looks good throughout both summer and winter. In late summer and early autumn small, tubular, two-lipped blue flowers bloom at the tops of the stems, making plants look like large, slightly branched lavenders.
Perovskia is named after V A Perovksi, a 19th century Russian general.
Perovskia 'Blue Spire'
This upright subshrub has grey-white stems with very deeply divided silver-grey leaves that grow up to 5cm long. In late summer and early autumn it produces violet-blue, tubular flowers in panicles up to 30cm long.
It looks great in mixed and herbaceous plantings, and as well as adding summer and autumn beauty, shines out over winter with its wonderful silver stems.
- Grow in well-drained, poor to moderately fertile soil in full sun.
- They tolerate dry, chalky soil and coastal conditions.
- Prune in early spring, cutting back flowered stems close to the base.
- Generally free from pests and disease.
The RHS Woody Plant Committee awarded Perovskia 'Blue Spire' an Award of Garden Merit with the following description:
'Erect small deciduous subshrub with white stems bearing deeply-divided, aromatic greyish leaves. Small violet-blue flowers in large plumy panicles.'