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Helianthus are the perennial members of the sunflower flower and give off the same amazing radiance in the summer as their annual relatives. Useful, trouble-free plants for the back of borders in either full sun or dappled shade.
Most helianthus are happy in dry soil however some varieties do have a tendency to run. These plants are also a magnet for bees and are good for flower arranging. Grow helianthus with dalihas, crocosmia and red hot pokers and especially any purple or bronze-leaved plants or tall grasses.
Helianthus atrorubens 'Miss Mellish' £2.50
(9cm pot available now)
Deep yellow, semi-double flowers with quilled petals. Flowers between August and October. Prefers full sun but is just as happy in dappled shade. Grows to around 60cm tall with a spread of 40cm. Hardy. Spreads slowly but steadily. Dies back in winter.