False Rockcress, (Often mis-spelled ‘Aubretia’ or ‘Aubrietia’)
Packet containing 100 mg,
Average contents 180 seeds.
Spread:to 60cm (24in).
Position:Sun to Partial Shade
Soil types:Prefers very well drained sites rich in lime
The Royal series is the only Aubrieta awarded to be awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit. With supreme flowering ability this variety of an old favourite takes a lot of beating. Aubrieta ‘Royal Violet’ is an excellent choice, forming a low cushion of evergreen leaves, literally smothered by violet flowers for several weeks. Perfect for a rock garden in sun or part shade, used as a ground cover, growing over rock walls or in alpine troughs and other containers.
“Rock Cress” is an extremely popular plant, and a familiar sight in the spring garden. Easy to grow from seed, it grows only 10cm (4in) high yet may grow to 60cm (24in) in width. In the spring theyflower so prolifically, that the blossoms almost completely cover the foliage below.
Hardy to -23°C (-10°F) in England the foliage of Aubrieta is evergreen and provides year-round cover. This soil hugging perennial seems to thrive in impoverished and hungry shallow soils. Plant in crevices of walls or on a steep bank to flow over in a waterfall cascade of colour.
Awarded the prestigious RHS Award of Garden Merit (AGM).
Sowing:Sow in February to June or in September to October for flowering throughout the following summer
Surface sow the seeds from late winter to early summer on the top of a good free draining seed compost, in cells or pots.
Aubrieta need light to germinate, so just cover the seed with a small amount of vermiculite. Make sure the compost is moist and not wet and seal in a polythene bag until after germination which usually takes 14-21 days at 18-20°C (65-68°F). Keep in a coldframe or unheated greenhouse. Remove the polythene bag once the first seedlings appear.
When seedlings are large enough to handle, transplant them to 7cm (3in) pots to grow on. Once established, plant out 30cm (12in) apart into a well drained garden soil preferably containing lime, in a sunny site.
Seeds can also be sown directly in open ground. Sow a few seeds into a small prepared area. Thin out seedlings as they grow to 5cm apart.
Aubrieta prefers light, well-drained soil, is tolerant of a wide pH range, and can grow in partial shade or full sun, but will be short lived if drainage is poor or weather is too hot.
Cut the plants back severely immediately after blooming to encourage healthy foliage growth, a thick mounding habit and secondary blooms. Do not prune in autumn. Remove damaged foliage in spring. Divide every 1 to 3 years.
Propagate by seed, cuttings, division or separation - Cuttings are usually more successful than division. Take softwood or semi-ripe cuttings from early- to mid-summer. Remove the lower leaves and root in sand. Saved seed may not breed true to type.
Suitable for rockeries, walls, borders, edging paths, planters, window boxes. Underplanting of shrubs.
The genus is named after Claude Aubriet, a French flower-painter. The true spelling is ’Aubrieta’ but in English vernacular use, the name is commonly (mis-)spelled as ‘Aubretia (or Aubrietia), an easier letter order for English speakers to pronounce. It originates from southern Europe east to central Asia and is a genus of about 12 species of flowering plants in the cabbage family Brassicaceae.
The species name ‘deltoidea’ comes from the botanical description for the leaf shape - “of a triangular or roughly triangular shape and attached to the stem via the side” An easy way to remember this description is by remembering the shape of the Greek letter ‘Delta’ - Δ is triangular,
or that the ‘deltoid’ muscle - is the triangular muscle on the human shoulder.
There are other colours and varieties of Aubrieta listed in the ebay shop.
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