With origins in Chile, Francoa were once grown as pot plants and only popped outdoors in the height of summer.
They can be obliterated by extreme weather so winter protection and a sheltered site is advised despite our warming climate.
They form an evergreen clump that makes an eye-catching centrepiece for the middle of the border adding a touch of elegance with their arching form.
The attractive flower stems are topped with cylindrical spikes of small, star-like, pink flowers with reddish markings. In good summers these spikes will reach 1m but they are usually a little less.
The roots prefer a humus-rich soil that is well-drained although they will grow in most reasonable garden soils. Sun is preferable but they will tolerate shade.
Named in honour of Francisco Franco a 16th century physician from Valencia.
Photo: © Jelitto
Full sun, partial shade
Clay Hill Road•Lamberhurst•Kent•TN3 8LT
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