Members of the Phyteuma genus are rosette forming hardy perennials.
They have a large range in height from as little as 5 cm up to 90 cm, this makes them ideal for many different parts of the garden, but for best results use smaller varieties in the rock garden or to fill in the gaps in drystone walling.
Phyteuma blooms in the summer, and depending on the species may have spiked or barbed shaped flowers of purple, blue or white.
One of the common names for these plants is Rampion.
Phyteuma nigrum (Schwarze Teufelskralle) by Frank.Vassen.
When growing Rampion outdoors from seeds it is best to start in the spring. The seeds should be sowed on the soil surface into flats. The flat should then be wrapped in a plastic bag and placed in the fridge for about three weeks. The flat should then be removed from the plastic bag and sank into the ground in an area of the garden that is fully shaded, and covered with glass to retain humidity.
It should take from between one to three months for the Phyteuma seeds to germinate. The seedlings should then be transplanted into a sunny or lightly shaded part of the garden. If you purchase Rampion from a garden centre then plant them in the garden in mid spring, when there is no chance of a late frost. Depending on the Phyteuma species, they should be spaced from 20 cm (small) to 45 cm (large) apart.
Phyteuma plants like to grow in a light, gritty or sandy soil, that is limy and fertile. The plants are easy to care for, simply water them when in prolonged dry spells. If you require more plants then they can be propagated by division in the autumn.
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