Aubretia is a compact, mat forming, spreading hardy perennial that is ideal for wall tops, rock-gardens and border edgings, and prefers to be grown in full sun and well drained soil.
It’s named after the French botanical artist Claude Aubriet.
The flowers appear from March-June, and have a colour range from white through pale pink to rich purple.
The semi-deciduous plants grows to approx. 100-200mm (4"-8") high and a spread of around 600mm (24”) limy soil is preferable but not essential.
On poor soils or when planting on dry banks or walls, enrich the planting hole with compost.
Aubretia is generally pest and disease free, however a prolonged spell of cool, damp weather may encourage downy mildew.
The symptoms are a yellowing of the leaves, with grey downy patches on the undersides.
Remove and destroy all affected leaves, including any on the ground around the plant, to prevent the spores from spreading.
Sow under glass, do not cover seed, and maintain a minimum temperature of 18°C (65°F)
Alternatively: Sow around Week 30 and germinate at 10°-18°C (50°-64°F)
Germination normally takes up 10-14 days.
circa Week 15>:
When seedlings are large enough to handle, prick them out into boxes/trays to grow on.
If you were unable to plant out the previous autumn plant out now if ground conditions are suitable.
circa Week 27/34:
Transfer seedlings to 70mm (3") pots, stand outdoors, or in a cold frame.
Keep seedlings well watered.
To keep established plants looking tidy, cut / shear them back by about half.
But if growing on walls or banks, simply remove the spent flower stems; this will retain the cascading shape.
Plants may be divided and the sections replanted if required.
Plant out new plants into their permanent site between now and Week 15
Keep young plants well watered until they are growing strongly.
Mulch established plants with a 50mm (2") layer of well rotted manure or compost.