This astrantia has stunning ruby-red pincushion flowers with a suggestion of white at the base of each petal. The leaves are pretty too; deeply lobed and mid green. This old cottage garden favourite has been enjoying a resurgence of interest in recent years, as it works equally well in contemporary style plantings. Use towards the front of a sunny, yet moist border, where the intense flower colour can be fully appreciated.
Astrantias have been cultivated in Britain since the 16th century and have numerous common names, such as melancholy gentleman, Hattie's pincushion and the more well-known masterwort.
Garden care: Astrantias do not like to dry out. Incorporate plenty of organic matter when planting and water well in dry weather especially newly established plants. Lift and divide large clumps in early spring and apply a generous 5-7 cm mulch of well-rotted manure or garden compost around the plant. Divided specimens may take some time to establish since they don't like having their roots disturbed.