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Potentilla nepalensis

Potentilla nepalensis
'Miss Willmott'
'Helen Jane'

Common name cinquefoil
Family rosaceae
Life cycle perennial (Z3-8)
Flowers rosy pink (early summer)
Size 12" tall
Light sun-part shade
Cultural notes ordinary garden soil
From seed germinate at room temperature, do not exclude light
detailed seed-starting info below

The best-known cultivar of this species is 'Miss Willmott', which is the one that has graced our garden for many years. From the tidy little rosette of glossy strawberry-like foliage that forms in spring, you'd never guess just how wildly the flowering stalks would sprawl just a couple months later. But they do, showing their charming slightly two-toned flowers in surprising places quite a ways from the central plant. Although I used to think of this habit as a nuisance, I've now grown used to it, and work with it to advantage in the garden. When it's done flowering, I just cut it right back, and it returns to its original tidyness.
More recently, we've grown 'Helen Jane' from traded seed. Since that is a hybrid, ours may not be true to the official named variety - I'll just describe it in the guise it's taken in our garden. It's not too different from 'Miss Willmott', but on first impression the flowers are a bit less ruffly, and the overall plant habit is slightly more upright.

We left this plant behind in our Pennsylvania garden (and wish it well); we don't grow it in Houston.

One or more images of this plant are included in my stock photo catalog

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Seed-starting details for this plant

  1. Seed from '04 garden. Baggy 70F with light (92%G, 5d)
  2. Seed for 'Helen Jane' from T&M via '04 trade. Baggy 70F with light (85%G, 6-12d)

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