Photo: Blackstem Plants
A pre-historic looking beast for creating your own personal jungle.
In ideal conditions, this mad plant from northern China will form a large mound of deep green circular, umbrella-like leaves. These rise on 80 cm stalks and each leaf can grow to 90cm across so this really is for the lovers of Tarzan type gardens.
The leaves also have flat table-like surfaces, hence the species name - ideal for the pixies in your garden to throw a dinner party. To achieve this you will need to give it a degree of shade, constantly moist soil and protection from high winds. It will just about tolerate full sun if the roots are constantly moist in a very rich soil.
Big creamy white plumes of Astilbe-like flowers make an appearance in early summer but these are a sideshow to the foliage.
Excellent beside a stream or pond.
Moist, wet, humus rich
Partial shade, shade