Echinops bannaticus 'Blue Glow'
Echinops bannaticus can be found growing wild in hot, dry and gravelly places from Central Europe to India.
They are thistles but solitary and non-invasive. 'Blue Glow' is a refined cultivar developed for the cut flower market as the steel blue spheres just look so good in bouquets.
In a border they exhibit a shorter habit than Echinops ritro with more pronounced branching and a profusion of golf-ball sized metallic blue flowers.
The foliage is a rich, healthy green that is grey and downy underneath. Bees, butterflies and all manner of insects swarm over the flowerheads which look quite magical in the dying days of summer. They become covered in fine gossamer that shimmers in warm orange sunsets.
Easy to grow and adaptable, they grow almost anywhere except rich soil or wet sites.
Well drained, sand, clay, loam
Full sun, partial shade