Day 202: scarlet cinquefoil

Daily details from the garden to bring you inspiration throughout the year

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You’ll no doubt have noticed that some flowers close up for the night – tulips, poppies, crocuses, and osteospermum among the most noticeable. I wasn’t aware that cinquefoils had this habit (known as nyctinasty) – until I wandered into the garden to take a portrait of Potentilla thurberi ‘Monarch’s Velvet’, only to find the blooms distinctly less open than they had been earlier in the day. A fabulous, well behaved perennial that forms a well-ordered dome of strawberry-like leaves, July is when the magic happens, as deep, ruby-red flowers are elevated above the foliage in generous number. It will self seed, but in such an ordered fashion that each new plant becomes a welcome addition to the garden, rather than a nuisance. Doubly so, as I’ve always found them to come true. I’ll pop back during business hours to take another photograph.


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Hello! I’m Andrew, gardener, writer, photographer, and owner of a too-loud laugh, and I’m so pleased you’ve found your way to Gardens, weeds & words. You can read a more in-depth profile of me on the About page, or by clicking this image.