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Desmodium Elegans or Elegant Tick Clover Naturally occurring in forests, thickets and mountain slopes, Desmodium Elegans, also known as Elegant Tick Clover, is a deciduous, woody subshrub. Prized for its rosy-pink flowers, this dwarf cultivar is ideal for colourful shrub borders and cottage gardens. The foliage of this dwarf shrub emerges in the spring. The large, ternate leaves are medium green, and slightly resemble those characteristic for clover, hence the name Elegant Tick Clover. Although the dense foliage, displayed on thin, reddish twigs, adds texture to the garden for the better part of the year, the showiest feature of this cultivar are its flowers. Unfolding in late summer through to autumn, the blush pink pea-like flowers borne in panicles steal the attention. When it comes to the optimal conditions for growth, Desmodium Elegans is not very picky. This woody subshrub prefers full sun and moist, well-drained soil. Generally pest and disease free, this dwarf cultivar is easy to grow and care for. Native to Asia, Elegant Tick Clover is fully hardy in Britain and Ireland. Although it can survive temperatures below -15 degrees, it might need sheltering from frost and strong winds in colder areas. If planted in an overly moist soil, this deciduous subshrub may suffer from dieback in the winter months. Even when Desmodium Elegans reaches maturity, it stays fairly compact, 1 to 1.5 metres high and across, which makes it a great candidate for gardens with limited space. As far as pruning goes, Desmodium requires very little effort to stay in top form. In the early spring, just remove weak or damaged stems to promote new growth, or, if you want to encourage prolific blooming, prune out the last year’s flowering stems. As a low-maintenance plant that doesn’t take up much space, but boasts a showy display of highly decorative blossoms, Elegant Tick Clover can be a great addition to a shrub border in smaller gardens. Its dense foliage offers texture and won’t overshadow its companions, and the prolonged flowering season allows you to enjoy the dainty panicles of rosy blossoms for weeks on end.