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Limonium Plant Growing & Care Guide for Gardeners

Article by Dean Ravenscroft, Ph.D. - Updated 26th Nov 2023

In this Gardener's HQ guide, we'll explore cultivating Limonium plants in your garden, indoor spaces, and other settings.

At a Glance: Limonium
  • Plant Characteristics: Limonium is known for its delicate, papery flowers that create a misty effect in a range of colors. Ideal for dried flower arrangements, this perennial adds both fresh and lasting beauty to gardens.
  • Ideal Growing Conditions: Prefers full sun and well-drained soil. It's salt-tolerant and thrives in coastal areas, making it perfect for seaside gardens.
  • General Care: Low maintenance; requires minimal watering once established. Deadheading can prolong the flowering period.
  • Tips for New Gardeners: Sea Lavender is a great choice for beginners, especially in challenging coastal conditions. Its resilience and minimal care requirements make it a rewarding plant for first-time gardeners.

Sea Lavender, and Sea Pink: Cultivation & Garden Use

The Limonium plant genus is very large in number. it thus contains half hardy annuals, half hardy perennials, and hardy perennials.

The plants typically range in height from 20 cm to 90 cm (8 to 36 inches).

Limonium pectinatum
Limonium pectinatum by Javiersanp; creative commons.

They have a woody nature. They can carry either panicle or spiky flowers. These are often trumpet shaped.

The time of blooming depends upon the Limonium species. This varies from the end of spring through into the autumn.

Limonium
Limonium by Tom hilton.

Some of the common names for Limonium include Sea Pink, Sea Lavender, Caspia, and Statice.

Commonly Grown Limonium Species Photographs and Plant Identification

Limonium sinuatum

Limonium sinuatum
Limonium sinuatum (Wavyleaf Sea Lavender), photograph by cultivar413; CC.

Limonium perezii

Limonium perezii
Limonium perezii (Perez's Sea Lavender / Seafoam Statice), photograph by cultivar413; CC.

Limonium latifolium

Limonium latifolium
Limonium latifolium (German Statice / Tatarian Sea-lavender / Statice), photograph by Amanda Slater; CC.

Limonium californicum

Limonium californicum
Limonium californicum (California Sea Lavender / Western Marsh Rosemary), picture by Dick Culbert; CC.

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Limonium Plant Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Caspia, Sea Lavender, Marsh Rosemary, Sea Pink, Tree limonium, Sea everlasting, Statice.
Family: Plumbaginaceae.
Life Cycle: Half hardy annual. Hardy perennial, half hardy perennial.
Height: 4 to 28 inches (10 to 70 cm).
Native: Europe, Asia, Australasia, Africa, North America.
Growing Region: Annuals: zones 2 to 10. Perennials: zones 4 to 10.
Flowers: Spring, summer and/or autumn.
Flower Details: Purple, violet, pink. Tiny, often trumpet shaped. Flowers carried on spikes or panicles.
Foliage: Simple. Lobed. Rosettes.
Sow Outside: Cover seed. Annuals: following last frost. Perennials: before last frost. Spacing 8 to 24 inches (20 to 60 cm).
Sow Inside: Germination time: eight days to three weeks. Temperature 70 to 75°F (21 to 24°C). Seven or eight weeks before expected last frost. Transplant outdoors a few weeks after the last frost; temperatures should not drop below 45°F (7°C).
Requirements: Full sunlight. Light soils. Sandy soil. Can survive in dry soils. Provide support if necessary. Yearly feed for perennials. Cut perennials to the ground in autumn. Propagate: divide perennials in spring or autumn.

How to Grow Sea Pink, Sea Lavender, and other Limonium Plants in the Garden

When growing members of Limonium plant species from seed, annuals should be sown after the last frost of spring, whilst perennials should be planted before the last frost.

Once sown, simply cover the seeds. Sea Pink and other Limonium like to grow in sunny areas of the garden. Ideally, this should have a light sandy and dry soil.

If first planning to start off sea pink seedlings indoors, then the growing process should start about two months before the last frost of spring is expected.

They take around two to three weeks to germinate at 18 to 24 degrees centigrade (64 to 75°F).

Once growing, the young plants should be spaced at about 30 cm (12 inches; small Limonium species) to 50 cm (20 inches; larger varieties.

Caring for Sea pink (Limonium plant species) in the Garden

Once established, Sea pink are easy to look after. They are tolerant of dry soil, so only need to be watered in extremely dry conditions.

Once the season is over in autumn, cut Limonium plants back to the ground.

If you require more plants, only from the perennial varieties of Limonium, then divide in spring (autumn flowerers) or autumn (spring flowerers).

Common Questions

How many members does the Limonium genus have?

The Limonium genus, commonly known as sea-lavender, statice or marsh-rosemary, includes about 120 species. These are flowering plants native to coastal zones.

Do members of Limonium make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Limonium species can make great garden or landscape plants, particularly in coastal gardens, rockeries, or borders. They are also used for dried flower arrangements.

Which Limonium species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

Limonium latifolium (Sea Lavender) and Limonium sinuatum (Statice) are frequently grown for their attractive, long-lasting flowers.

Are members of the Limonium plant genus fragrant?

Limonium plants are not typically known for their fragrance. However, their colorful, papery flowers are often used in dried flower arrangements.

What is the perfect location to grow Limonium?

Limonium prefers a sunny spot with well-drained, even sandy soil. They are excellent for seaside gardens, as they tolerate salt and windy conditions.

Is Limonium invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Limonium vulgare, a species not native to North America, has been noted as invasive in the coastal areas of some northeastern states.

How do I remove Limonium plants from my garden?

To remove Limonium, dig out the entire plant, ensuring all roots are removed to prevent it from regrowing.

Summary

The Limonium genus, a member of the Plumbaginaceae family, comprises perennial plants native to the Mediterranean region. Known for their papery, small flowers often used in dried floral arrangements, these plants are often used in borders and rock gardens and are commonly known as sea lavenders.

Limonium prefers full sun and well-drained soil. It is salt-tolerant and drought-tolerant once established. Propagation is typically done through seeds or division, generally in the spring.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Limonium plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Armeria maritima, Gladioli, Globe Daisy, and Ceratostigma plumbaginoides plants.

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