I could easily be a bit ‘sniffy’ about statice (Limonium sinuatum), especially as I grew up in a house that always had a basket of the stuff that was several years old, faded and dusty. It is not especially trendy and the flowers are rather small and nondescript. But I really, really love the stuff. The fact that it is extremely useful and easy to grow makes the relationship less of an affair but a real friendship.
Although there are dozens of different limonium species and some are perennial, this one is annual and is raised from seed each year. The seeds should be started in gentle heat in March and the seedlings soon produce small rosettes that look more like a lawn weed than a garden plant. But once planted out, when danger of frost is past, they form bigger rosettes of raggedy leaves and soon start sending up stout, winged stems and their angular, flat flower heads. Although these are largely self-supporting they do splay open a bit but as soon as the flowers show colour they can be cut, tied into bunches and dried or picked to use fresh. Keep cutting the stems and the plants just keep on making more! I grew about 60 plants for the cutting garden, in two colours but I wish I had grown a mix as well to get the full range of colours. The flowers are small but they are popular with bees and especially butterflies.
Geoff’s rating 9/10
Garden rating 8/10