I’ve collected together our collection of Agapanthus and arranged them in a rough height order for you to compare side by side. Clicking on a variety will take you back to that entry inn our shop.
- Agapanthus ‘Peter Pan’ is a new compact Agapanthus with a dwarf habit. Makes a good clump of leaves to 15cm and in July to September sends up many stems 30-45cm high with open umbels of pale sky-blue flowers each petal enhanced by a darker blue stripe. Hardy in a sunny well drained position
- Agapanthus ‘Glacier Stream’. Produces a profusion of soft white flowers from green buds. Each flower is tinted slightly purple outside and has a subtle purple stripe. The anthers are grey and the flower stems are flushed purple, making a soft dusky white effect which sits more comfortably in some schemes than a bright white. One of the earliest to flower, blooming from July – august on relaxed, gently arching stems. deciduous and very hardy. 45cm
- Agapanthus ‘Black Pantha’. A really dark beauty. Glistening deep violet buds are shaded black with a ruby flush where they meet the bronze pedicels. They stand up at first and, as they open, droop to form a rounded head of darkest violet-blue flowers.The nodding form acts to emphasise the glossy backy-blue reverse on the petals and the dark stripe inside. 60cm high in flower. July-September
- Agapanthus ‘Sunfield’. One of the best performing mid sky blue Agapanthus. It is vigorous and very floriferous producing huge 20-30cm across heads of good sky blue flowers enhanced by a bolder stripe and opening from darker buds. Easy, deciduous and hardy. Good strong upright stems from August onwards.
- Agapanthus ‘Enigma’. The first bicolour agapanthus to be bred in the UK by Ken Rigney. This lovely Agapanthus is neither blue nor white but a beautiful combination of both. Lots of trumpet shaped flowers are borne by reddish bronze pedicels and from white buds become more and more stained at the bases with purple-blue. When fully open the insides and main section of the petals are pure white but the tube and a stripe on the reverse of the petals is violet. The white stamens are tipped with dark anthers. Altogether something really different and a real eye-catcher. 75cm. July-August. Evergreen
- Agapanthus ‘Windsor Grey’. A subtle and very beautiful cultivar which is very easy to grow. Flower heads are large and dense with distinctly trumpet shaped flowers that point down at an angle. The colour is palest violet blue, fading to pink as the flower withers. 85cm, Late Summer. Semi-deciduous
- Agapanthus ‘Blue Giant’. Another of Lewis Palmer’s hybrids raised at Bressingham with rich deep blue flowers in rounded heads set atop dark purple stained stems. The foliage is distinctively darker and more compact and the stems tend to come earlier than most and reach 80-100cm. The foliage is deciduous or semi-evergreen in mild winters.
- Agapanthus ‘Blue Triumphator’. One of the best of hardy hybrid Agapanthus. Soft violet-blue florets each accentuated by a purple-blue central vein in spherical heads containing 30-50 individual flowers. A large tall variety reaching 1.2m in flower in July to September. Deciduous and hardy. Associates well with Artemisias.
- Agapanthus Headbourne hybrids. Good vigorous blue Agapanthus selected for hardiness and garden performance. In the 1950’s and 1960’s Lewis Palmer began to hybridise A. campanulatus at his garden at Headbourne Worthy near Winchester. He gave away many of his seedlings and consequently the name of the ‘Headbourne Hybrids’ has become attributed to a range of good blues which are heralded as being some of the most reliable Winter hardy Agapanthus. Their deciduous nature allows well sited plants to survive down to -15oC although below -5oC a deep mulch of bracken or other insulating material is recommended. They are generally around 80cm high and flower July to August.
- Agapanthus ‘White Umbrella’. Tall (140cm) strong stems with large spherical heads crammed with glistening white flowers. They are a beautiful sight to behold in full flower in Summer and have become particular favourites for larger pots in the English Country Garden. They have handsome dark green, broad strap-like evergreen leaves which can form impenetrable ground cover in milder Counties. Their evergreeen natutre makes them less robust in cold Winters and in pots they are best brought under cover (no heat is required, just hard frost protection). Flowers June-August. A. praecox subsp. Orientalis, A. africanus, A. umbellatus
- Agapanthus ‘Blue Umbrella’. Tall (140cm) strong stems with large spherical heads crammed with rich cobalt-blue flowers. They are a beautiful sight to behold in full flower in Summer and have become particular favourites for larger pots in the English Country Garden. They have handsome dark green, broad strap-like evergreen leaves which can form impenetrable ground cover in milder Counties. Their evergreeen natutre makes them less robust in cold Winters and in pots they are best brought under cover (no heat is required, just hard frost protection). Flowers June-August. A. praecox subsp. Orientalis, A. africanus, A. umbellatus
- Agapanthus ‘Jack’s Blue’. Held by many to be the best blue hardy agapanthus. From July-October it produces an abundance of deep purple-blue flowers on strong tall stems to 150cm. it is a new Zealand hybrid of great vigour and floral bounty. It can be either evrgreen or semi-evergreen. Always admired for its form, colour and the quantity of blooms it pushes up. Flowers come from July to October. A particular favourite
There are relatively few Agapanthus species – just 7, but the nomenclature of garden forms is rather confused., possibly because they so freely hybridise. It has been suggested that Agapanthus consists of just one, highly variable species. They are magnificent bulbous plants which produce an unrivalled show of blue when grown well. Their large umbels of blue trumpets are quite unlike anything else.
Easily grown in well drained sunny positions. It is essential that the roots do not become waterlogged in Winter as this can lead to root death. In the evergreen species the drier they are kept in Winter appears to correlate to the amount of cold they can withstand, but as a good general rule the deciduous cultivars are hardier and more robust and can usually be grown throughout the British Isles, especially if given a deep mulch in colder areas which get winter temperatures lower than -5oC.
The evergreen species and cultivars have long been treasured as an English favourite for tub culture. Being rather less hardy than their deciduous cousins it is advisable to grow them in sheltered situations in the warmest Counties or where they can be moved undercover for the worst of the weather. Remember that the plants grown in pots are at a risk of freezing completely solid whereas the ground usually stays above freezing point, especially if the crowns are well protected with a deep mulch.
Agapanthus will tolerate being overcrowded, another attribute that suits them to pot culture, indeed it may even encourage flowering. If they need dividing, do this in Spring and do not bury the plants too deeply. Feed tub specimens liberally from Spring until flower bud are seen.
All require full sun or at least 2/3 sun in Summer for the deciduous forms and a fertile soil which is moist rather than dry. The evergreen types are drought resistant once well established.
They are resistant to most garden pests including molluscs, rabbits & deer.
Most Agapanthus considered hardy should stand several degrees of frost, maybe down to -5oC. However, the Hybrids known collectively as Agapanthus ‘Headbourne Hybrids’ are said to be hardy down to -15 oC, given ideal conditions. These are the result of a long passion for breeding Agapanthus by The Honourable Lewis Palmer (1894-1971. He) was the younger son of the second Earl of Selbourne, a keen plantsman and friend of E.A.Bowles he bred a great number of hybrids, the best of which became collected under the heading of Agapanthus ‘Headbourne Hybrids’.
When planting Agapanthus, it is noted that the flowering stems (with the exception of A.inapetus) will always lean towards the sun.
In New Zealand Agapanthus grow particularly well – so well in fact that they are classified as a pernicious weed whose sale is prohibited.
Agapanthus are excellent for cutting – if you dare.
Agapanthus derives from the Greek ‘apage’ =love and ‘antjos’ = flower. African Lily, Blue African Lily, Lily of the Nile
I’ve seen Agapanthus classified variously in the Alliaceae, Liliaceae, Amaryllidaceae and Agapanthaceae.