There are several different types of anemones. Some grow from bulb-like corms and others are herbaceous perennials. Bloom times range from early spring through fall.
Anemone blanda, also known as Grecian windflower, grows from corms that are planted in fall for flowers the following spring. These low-growing plants have mounding, finely textured foliage and daisy-like flowers. Anemone blanda is an ideal companions for other spring blooming bulbs such as tulips and daffodils.
Anemone coronaria blooms in early spring or late summer, depending on when the corms are planted. The showy flowers have dark centers and silky, brightly colored petals. De Caen and St. Brigid are the two most common types of Anemone coronaria. Both are outstanding cut flowers and will last 2 to 3 weeks in a vase. In warm zones, the corms of Anemone coronaria are usually planted in fall. In colder zones they are planted in spring. Shop HERE for Anemone blanda and Anemone coronaria
Anemone canadensis and Anemone sylvestris are hardy, long-lived perennials with snow-white spring flowers. Anemone x hybrida is a hardy 2 to 3 foot perennial that blooms in the fall and has white or pink flowers. Popular cultivars of Anemone x hybrida include ‘Honorine Jobert’ and ‘Robustissima’.
When you compare two anemone corms side by side, it’s easy to see differences in quality. A larger corm (as shown at far left) contains more stored energy and will produce a stronger plant with more flowers. Depending on the type of anemone, Longfield Gardens supplies 5+, 6/7 or 7/8 cm corms to ensure you enjoy the biggest, brightest blooms.
Sun or Shade: Anemone blanda thrives in light shade, though in cooler zones it may also be grown in full sun. De Caen and St. Brigid anemones may be grown in sun or partial shade, but in cooler zones they flower best in full sun. Herbaceous anemones such as Anemone canadensis, Anemone sylvestris and Anemone x hybrida grow in sun or light shade.
Winter Hardiness: Anemone blanda is hardy in zones 5-9 and will come back to bloom again each year. De Caen and St. Brigid anemones are hardy in zones 7-9 and will usually flower well for several years. In colder areas (growing zones 3-6), De Caen and St Brigid anemones are treated as summer-blooming annuals – planted in spring for summer flowers. Anemone canadensis and Anemone sylvestris are hardy in zones 3-7 and Anemone x hybrida is hardy in zones 4-8.
Soil Conditions: Plant anemones in well-drained soil. Before planting, you can improve the soil by digging in compost, leaf mold or other organic matter.
Anemone blanda is a compact, 6 to 8” plant with attractive, fern-like foliage. They are excellent companions for spring-blooming bulbs and pair well with spring-blooming perennials such as primroses, dicentra and hellebores. When planted in large numbers, anemone blanda will spread a carpet of color through woodlands and shade gardens.
De Caen and St. Brigid anemones do not like to compete with other types plants. Give them their own space or grow them in pots and planters. They are also suitable for cutting gardens.
Herbaceous anemones such as Anemone canadensis, Anemone sylvestris and Anemone x hybrida can be planted in perennial borders, shade gardens or naturalized areas. They grow well in sun or shade.
When to Plant: The corms of anemone blanda should be planted in fall, at the same time as tulips and daffodils. In zones 7-10, DeCaen and St. Brigid anemones can be planted in the fall for flowers the following spring. In cooler zones, De Caen and St. Brigid anemones should be planted in early spring for flowers in summer or early fall. Herbaceous anemones can be planted in spring, summer or fall.
Depth and Spacing: Plant anemone blanda 2” deep and 3” apart on center. Plant DeCaen and St. Brigid anemones 3” deep and 3 to 4” apart on center. For herbaceous anemones, follow label instructions.
Planting Tips: Anemone corms are hard and dry. Soaking them in lukewarm water for 4 to 6 hours before planting will make it easier for the sprouts to emerge. When planting the corms, don’t worry about which end is up. They can be positioned in any direction and the sprouts will find their way to the sun.
Anemone blanda is native to the Mediterranean, where soils are very well drained, summers are dry, and winters are relatively warm. In the U.S., they prefer similar growing conditions, so are well suited to rock gardens and open woodlands with well-drained soil.
Once the foliage of De Caen and St Brigid anemones emerges from soil, it will take 12-15 weeks for the flowers to open. Flowering usually continues for 3 to 4 weeks. It’s normal for these anemones to produce few roots, so don’t be concerned if you see very little root growth.
Anemone x hybrida is a slow-growing, well-behaved perennial. When the growing conditions are right, Anemone canadensis and Anemone sylvestris can spread quite rapidly, which may be desirable in a woodland garden but can be too much for a small perennial garden.
All anemones are distasteful to deer and rodents.
Most anemones will flower for three to four weeks. After the blossoms have faded, allow the foliage to remain so the plant can build up energy for next year’s flowers.
De Caen and St. Brigid anemones are winter hardy in zones 7-8, though they will benefit from an insulating layer of winter mulch. If you live in a colder growing zone or don’t want to risk losing the corms over the winter, you can dig them up in fall after the foliage has died back. Let the corms dry thoroughly and then pack them into dry peat moss. Store these corms separately, not mixed with other types of bulbs, in a dry, well-ventilated place at 50-55°F. Replant in spring.
Anemone blanda is more cold tolerant, but the bulbs still appreciate being covered with straw or leaves to help protect them from extreme cold.