Acanthus Mollis Bears Breech
Acanthus Mollis Bears Breech flowering
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Acanthus Mollis or Bear’s Breeches
Acanthus mollis is a striking garden addition that’s more commonly known as Bear’s Breech or Bear’s Breeches. It’s is a hardy perennial plant with tall white flower spikes and a strong architectural shape. Flowering each year, Bear’s Breech produces large dark and shiny green leaves with lobed edges. This leaf design was much copied in the classical art and architecture of the ancient Greeks and Romans. Many gardeners appreciate bears breech for the striking leaves alone.
From June two-tone towering spires of feathery white flowers with hooded purple bracts appear from the plant’s centre. The flowers are attractive to pollinators. After the flowering season has finished in late autumn the spires can be removed well before the foliage begins to fade. In winter Acanthus Mollis will die back ready to start afresh in early spring. The visual appeal of an acanthus mollis lasts a long time – you’ll certainly get your money’s worth.
Acanthus Mollis Hardiness Levels
Acanthus Mollis is a hardy perennial in all of the UK. It will grow well in all soils and PH levels, though it does need good drainage. It has good drought resistance too due to its deep tap roots, but if it’s grown in direct sunlight the leaves may scorch. Acanthus Mollis is a vigorous plant that can spread and withstand the sometimes volatile UK weather.
How To Use Acanthus Mollis
Acanthus Mollis Bears Breeches is a practical and beautiful addition to the back of a flower border where it will develop into a large attractive clump. It produces an architectural shape through lobed leaves and flower spikes and adds interest to the often over-looked mid-height level. You can also use it as a stand-alone specimen in a grassy area or plant it directly into a gravel path. It’s a great favourite of garden designers. Bears breeches fares best in garden soil but you can grow it in containers too if they are deep and well watered in the summer.
How To Care For Acanthus Mollis
The best soil for acanthus mollis is deep loamy fertile soil, but it will manage in most situations. In very hot summers it will need some water if not kept in a shady location. The leaves can wilt and develop powdery mildew, but this is not a problem if the roots are kept watered. Bears breeches’ thick leaves and shady habit means that it can attract snails and slugs. They do not usually attack the plant so much as hide in its leafy shade. Acanthus mollis will benefit from a thick layer of rotted compost over winter to produce the strongest and brightest flowering stems the following year.
Acanthus Mollis creates a dramatic structural statement in a shady flower border where you may find it difficult to grow sun-loving plants. Its unusual showy flowers and powerful leaf shape makes bears breeches one of the most popular buys for a good-sized shady border.
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