Commonly known as wallflowers, erysimums are vigorous, bushy evergreen perennials producing long spikes of scented flowers held above narrow leaves. Flowering from early spring onwards, these incredibly versatile and floriferous plants will provide your borders with months of colour and will attract pollinating insects to the garden. Easy to grow, they make fantastic bedding and edging plants and are a wonderful way to embellish stone and brick walls. Plant them en masse or try mixing them with dahlias, echinaceas, euphorbias, geraniums or lavanders.
Plant erysimums in moderately fertile, well-drained soil in full sun. They will tolerate neutral and alkaline conditions. Lightly trim after flowering.
Always unpack on arrival and store in a cool place until ready to plant.
Potential problems, pests and diseases:
Flea beetles:these small beetles feed on foliage, creating small holes and cavities in the upper side of the leaves. Although it is unlikely that established plants will sustain fatal damage, vulnerable seedlings may not survive. To prevent any risk of infestation, dispose of any deceased plant material and debris ahead of the winter months.
Snails and slugs:these pests enjoy munching on young shoots, stems, leaves and flowers. Watch out for damage!
Bacterial leaf blight: this bacterial disease is usually seen as sooty growths or spots on the leaves — these will turn brown with a yellow margin before eventually dying.
Clubroot: this infection causes roots to become swollen and distorted. Hosts may stunt, show discolouration and wilt in warm weather. As soon as you spot this, remove and burn any infected plant material before disinfecting your gardening tools.
Downy mildews: these fungal diseases usually caused by planting in the shade or by poor air circulation can be seen in the form of white, powdery coating on the leaves. Cut off any infected material before disinfecting your scissors.