The Benedict or Geum is a charming perennial which was, for a time, fallen into disuse. Is it because of his little name which sounded too old? Or because its modest stature and understated character were easily overshadowed by other more showy plants?
It’s hard to know… The moods and tastes of gardeners are sometimes changeable. And it’s happy because here it is back in the massifs and in the hearts .
If she hasn’t conquered yours yet, here are some good reasons to open the doors of your garden to her.
- La Benoîte is dapper, light and terribly chic
Le Benoîte is a chic beauty, a little flirtatious, but without excess. Its flowers, single or double , with a natural look, are carried by tall, thin and flexible stems . They come in a pretty range of colors , bright or pastel, which goes from butter yellow to red, often tinged with orange or pink. Its petals, sometimes slightly wavy, are organized like a petticoat around a delicate centre. Its serrated foliage serves as a backdrop and can even be an additional asset when it puts on its golden robe, as with the sublime and luminous ‘Eos’ variety .
- Benedict flowers in late spring and until early summer… and sometimes even longer
It is a floriferous perennial which has the advantage of marking its presence when many other perennials are finishing or have not yet started theirs. From the end of April and until June, Benedicts take over from the early perennials and make the connection until the beginning of summer. Some varieties, such as ‘Totally Tangerine’ (our customers’ favorite this spring) are even real champions since it bears its fruity orange for almost 5 months!
- The Geum fits everywhere and is easily associated
Space-saving , the Geum slips easily into a bed, even already well-stuffed. It comes together just as easily .
Yellow cultivars such as ‘Banana Daiquiri’ or ‘Cocktail Gimlet’ (to be consumed without moderation!) are the perfect complement to flowering perennial blue Geraniums such as ‘Spinners’ .
Bright oranges combine, for the best, with Allium aflatunense ‘ Purple Sensation’ or sage ‘Caradonna’ to compose dynamic ensembles.
Benedicts, all colors combined, also go well with Columbines with which they share the art of froufrou… You can also install them in a summer bed, with Monardes , Daisies or Echinacea which will take over at the end of their flowering. Note in passing that the Geum triflorum is perfect for the “Prairie” style: once wilted, its flowers turn into pretty pink and feathery egrets.
- They are easy to grow, even in slightly damp soil.
The Geum are grown in the sun without burning or under a light shade, in good garden soil, rather cool (in rather dry soil, a few waterings and a good mulch generally do the trick) and even in very humid soil for the Avens . Streams ( G. rivale ).