Veronica spicata

Spiked Speedwell (UK) An upright slim-flowered hardy herbaceous perennial, this veronica is well suited to the front of a border II displays long, toothed, lance-shaped, mid-green leaves. The narrow, 7 5-15cm (3-6in) long spires of small blue flowers are borne throughout mid-summer Several superb lorms are worth growing, including 8tue Fox' (ultramarine blue) and Barcarolle (rose-pink). Iferonica longitoha is another purple-blue-ftowered border plant II rises up to 1 2m (4ft) and bears 15cm f6m] long terminal spires of

Veronica prostrata blends well in a rock garden with yell ow-tl owe red plants such as Linum flavum, wilh 2 5cm (lin) wide mid-summer llowers, and the ever-reliable Hypericum olympicum, with golden-yellow flowers

Topngh- Veronica spicata

This is a reliable hardy herbaceous perennial for the front of a border where it can display its spires of small blue flowers to advantage dunng mid-summer There are several excellent varieties from which to choose.

Right Catananche caerutea

This beautiful short-lived perennial brings a wealth of colour to a border It is also excellent as a cut-flower, and can be dned for winter decora-tic in m the home The flowers appear dunng summer For details see under Further plants to consider on the opposite page flowers from early to late summer To create a dominant clump, set the individual plants about 45cm (iyt; apart Veronica virginica is another good border species with pale blue spires ol flowers Height: 30 -45cm (1-1'2ft) Spread: 3Q-38cm (12-I5in) Cultivation; Well-drained but moisture-retentive friable soil in full sun or slight shadeassures success. In late autumn, cut the stems down to soil-level

Propagation: During spring, lift and divide congested clumps—you can usually do Ihis every three or four years This ensures healthy plants

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