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Rosaceae

Potentilla

po-ten-TIL-lah
Potentilla fruticosa 'Gibson's Scarlet'

A very large genus of around 500 species of mostly shrubs and herbaceous perennials from throughout the Northern hemisphere, Potentilla are grown for their pretty, 5-petaled, saucer-, cup-, or star-shaped flowers that bloom from spring to autumn. The leaves may be pinnate or palmate and often have prominent veins and wrinkles. Various species are great in a shrub or mixed border, in rock gardens, or as low hedges. Clumping hybrids sometimes have semi-double or double flowers and strawberry-like foliage.

Noteworthy Characteristics5-petaled flowers in white, yellow, orange, pink, or red over a long blooming period.

CareGrow rock-garden species in poor, gitty, sharply drained soil. Other species prefer poor to moderately fertile, well-drained soil in full sun.

PropagationPerennials may be divided in autumn or spring, while shrubs can be propagated from greenwood cuttings taken in early summer. Sow seed in containers in a cold frame in spring or autumn.

ProblemsDowny mildew, powdery mildew, leaf blister, rust, and fungal leaf spots can affect plants.

Species and cultivars

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Winter Interest

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