From the Greek eri, early or ear, spring, geron, old, possibly referring to the hoary leaves of some species (Cornpositae). Fleabane. Hardy herbaceous, daisy-flowered perennials some of which continue to flower intermittently throughout the summer.
Species cultivated E. alpinus, 9 inches, purple and yellow, August, northern Alps. E. aurantiacus, orange daisy. 12-18 inches, orange, summer, Turkestan. E. aureus, 4 inches, bright gold, spring onwards, North America. E. compositus, 3 inches, purple, summer, North America. E. glaucus, 6-12 inches, purple to pink, summer, North America. E. coulteri, 15 inches, white or pale mauve, summer, North America. E. leiomerus, 4 inches, small, lavender-blue, North America. E. macranthus (syn. E. mesa-grande), 2 feet, violet, yellow centres, summer, North Africa. E. mucronatus, 9 inches, white, deep and pale pink, summer and autumn, Mexico, a useful wall plant. E. philadelphus, 2 feet, lilac-pink, summer, North America. E. speciosus, 18 inches, violet-blue, summer, North America. E. trifidus, 2 inches, pale lavender, summer, North America. E. uniflorus, 4 inches, white or purplish, summer, North America.
Cultivars include: ‘B. Ladhams’, bright rose; ‘Bressingham Strain’, (E. aurantiacus), orange to yellow shades, May to July; ‘Charity’, 2 feet, pale pink; ‘Darkest of All’, 2 feet, deep violet; ‘Dignity’, 2 feet, mauve-blue; `Felicity’, 1 1-2 feet, deep pink, large; ‘Foerster’s Liebling 1 feet, deep pink, semi-double; `Gartenmeister Walther’, 2 feet, soft pink; `Merstham Glory’, 2 feet, deep lavender-blue, semi-double; ‘Prosperity’, 2 feet, deep blue; ‘Quakeress’, 2 feet, pale blue overlaid silvery pink; ‘Quakeress White’, 2 feet, white; ‘Unity’, 2. feet, bright pink; ‘Vanity’, 3 feet, clear pink, late flowering; ‘Wupperthal’, 2 feet, pale blue.
Cultivation Plant in the autumn or early spring in a sunny position in ordinary soil on a rock garden, or towards the front of the border for the taller varieties. E. mucronatus is a good plant for paved areas or steps, where it can seed itself between the cracks. Cut down stems after flowering. Named varieties are propagated by division of the chimps in the autumn or spring, the species by seed sown in the open in light soil in a shady position from April to June.
How to grow Erigeron