Grecian Windflowers and Other Anemones

A few years ago I ordered some anemone tubers to give this plant a try. The kind of anemone that I planted was Anemone blanda or Grecian windflowers.

The plants have been a nice surprise. The tubers were small brown little blobs that looked like old raisins. There was no way to tell which part of the tuber was the top and what part was the bottom so I simply spread them above a bed of hyacinth bulbs.

Anemone blanda

Anemone blanda

The plants are only a few inches tall but the daisy-like blossoms that emerge early in the spring are a good addition to the garden. This anemone blossoms in shades of pink, blue and white but most of the tubers that I have are blue.

They tend to bloom at the same time as the hyacinths and the two plants make a nice combination.

Since planting them, I’ve learned a few things about anemones. When you plant the tubers in the fall, it’s suggested that you soak them in water for a few hours before planting. I didn’t do this but given the way the tubers looked when I planted them, it probably would be a good idea to do this.

Seeing the small clump of plants that I have, I’ve realized that this flower would look even better if it were grown in mass – i.e., hundreds of tubers in a large area. I could see these growing in a rock garden or planted between daylilies or other perennials. They would blossom early and then be out of the way when the perennials started to bloom.

A pleasant surprise is that every part of the anemone is poisonous so rabbits aren’t interested in eating them. For me, that’s always a plus!

Anemone coronaria (from

Anemone coronaria

I hadn’t realized how many different varieties of anemones are in cultivation. There are spring blooming anemones that grow from tubers and others kinds of anemones that are fibrous rooted perennial plants that blossom in the fall. The tuberous rooted plants include the kind that I’m growing and also the larger Anemone coronaria which is the kind of anemone that you’ll find in flower arrangements. The fibrous rooted perennial plants blossom in September and October with white or pink poppy-like blossoms. Unlike the low growing Anemone blanda, these plants can grow to three feet tall and provide flowers during a time of the year when the choices of blooming plants is limited.

Fall Blooming Anemone (from

Fall Blooming Anemone

I’ve been impressed with the Grecian windflowers and I think I want to try some of the other anemones that are available. They seem to be a sturdy species with a lot of variety. I’m especially interested in the fall blooming plants – it’d be nice to see something other than chrysanthemum blossoming in the fall flower garden!


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