Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’

Helianthus Lemon Queen, Regent's Park, 28 September 2021
Helianthus Lemon Queen, Regent’s Park, 28 September 2021

A good, reliable plant for the end of the year, bringing height to the middle or back of a border, and colour, with bright pale-yellow sunflower-shaped flowers. Needs a sunny position, either in a border. Also work well in prairie planting. Its only drawback is that it can become rather large, and then start flopping, so some support is often needed (carefully positioned hazel twigs stuck into the ground in early summer, known as ‘peastaking’, are perfect as they disappear into the foliage when the plant grows).

H x S: 2m x 0.5m

Aspect and soil: Best in moderately fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in full sun.

Use: At the back of a summer border, where it will take over from earlier-flowering perennials, alongside Helenium, grasses, Salvias etc.

Care: Remove spent flower stems in late autumn, when they become unsightly, and at the latest in the spring. Mulch with garden compost in the spring. Divide every three or four years to keep it young and vigorous.

Wildlife: Bees and butterflies love it.

Hazard: —

Origin: Species from the Americas, this one is of garden origin.

Hardiness: H4