Actaea plants and species or 'Bugbane' prefer part shade and a moist soil with Actaea simplex being the most widely grown species.
The beauty of these plants is that they are relatively late flowering and with tall pale pink flower spikes they make a dramatic impact in the garden border, or a woodland situation.
Remember that in full growth these plants will reach around 1m (3ft) so they are best towards the back of the border.
Grow from seed collected after Actea flower in late autumn or by division.
Species and cultivars include :
- Actaea simplex (syn Cimcifuga simplex) commonly called 'Bugbane', tall with pale bottle brush like flowers in spring.
- Actaea racemosa (syn Cimcifuga racemosa) is also known as Black coshosh, creamy white flowers followed by poisonous berries.
- Actaea spicata - Known as the Baneberry, as well as 'Herb Christopher', not widely grown as a garden plant.
- Actaea james compton - A cultivar od A.simplex.
- Actaea rubra
- Actaea pachypoda - Also known as the white Baneberry, white fluffy flowers followed fascinating pink stems and white berries.
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Actaea varieties are available for sale from the following nurseries
CLAIRE AUSTIN HARDY PLANTS Hardy Plants
Edgebolton, Shawbury, Shropshire, SY4 4EL - Tel: 01939 251173
Mail order specialists of herbaceous perennials, including bearded irises, herbaceous & tree peonies. Over 700 different varieties.