Growing Astrantia Plants In The Yards
Astrantia is a plant genus that is part of the Apiaceae family. It contains about three species, each with several varieties. These deciduous perennial plants are native to Europe. Most of the plants feature lobed leaves that are arranged in a rosette and clusters of flowers that sit atop erect stems. Landscapers utilize these plants in flower beds or borders, while florists use the cut flowers in various arrangements. If you grow these starry perennial plants, you’ll know that many come in dark colours, from blood red to deep purple and near black. These dark types are the most sought after and are mostly cultivars or varieties of Astrantia major – a European native sporting pale pink pincushions, framed by pink-tinged green and cream bracts. The glossy green leaves form impressive mounds. One of the loveliest of this good-looking family is the stately A. maxima, tall and beautiful.
The pale pink bracts forming the characteristic ‘ruff’ are wide, tapering to a point, framing the prominent central umbel of large, crushed-strawberry coloured flowers. The underside of the flowerhead is an astonishing bright green. These plants, which reaches around 70cm, hasn’t produced the same impressive quantity of offspring as has A. major, but there is a deeper pink variety called A. maxima ‘Mark Fenwick’. Some well-known types of straitness such as the dark red A. maxima ‘Hadspen Blood’ and deep pink A. ‘Roma’ are thought to be hybrids between the two species.