Of the 70-80 annuals sown at the garden each year, a key favourite both of mine and of it’s seed-distributor (Sarah Raven), is Euphorbia oblongata. It’s more of a biennial and occasional short-lived perennial than an annual; sown mid-summer to flower early in the following year.
I use this tough and reliable little plant both in the cutting garden and in the perennial beds; making use of it’s shade-tolerance to brighten up dim stretches of border in the shadow of the house. I can’t really ‘hype’ the plant up enough; on top of all else it holds colour in the vase for well over a week and, due to it’s ferrel origins, mixes just as well with cultivated and wild flowers alike.
This morning I planted out a row of next year’s champions in the cutting beds.
the sarah raven site claims that oblongata flowers from may to december for autumn sown seedling, have you found this to be true? it sounds like an incredibly long flowering time.
Hi Tim, yes, surprisingly long flowering time. I would say a more accurate estimate would be May-September though. They maintain flowers for most of this period but then form seed heads (which appear in colour and size very much the same as the flowers) for the final few months. However by September/October there’s little doubt the thing has gone to seed! Hope this helps.