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September's plant of the month is the Japanese anemone29 August 2014
September's plant of the month is the Japanese anemone, a real star of the border at this time of year. You usually associate woodland plants which enjoy shade with the spring - but Japanese anemones come into their own in early autumn, just as other more summery plants are beginning to fade and just as you need a new injection of colour.
There are two main types: tall, willowy Anemone x hybrida and the shorter and daintier A. hupehensis which has semi-double and double types. 'Pamina', for example, is a semi-double hupehensis type with frilly, powder-pink petals around a yellow boss - like many Japanese anemones, it looks particularly fabulous planted with late-flowering geraniums like 'Rozeanne'.
Japanese anemones are best planted right now, when they also happen to be in full flower - so you know exactly what you're getting. Come down to our garden centre and have a browse, then choose your favourite, from deepest plum-pink 'Hadspen Abundance' to feminine pink 'Rosenschale' or double white 'Whirlwind'. All are incredibly tough and hardy and in time will spread into a carpet of spectacular late-season colour. Don't be too quick to dead-head those long-lasting blooms, though: the neat lime-green bobbles which follow are very pretty too.