How to Grow and Take Care of Anemone Plants

How to Grow and Take Care of Anemone Plants

Table of Contents

Are you looking for a low-maintenance spring-flowering plant with knockout blooms? Or perhaps you want large blooms to brighten up your autumn garden? Well, look no further than anemone – the easy-to-grow flower that will bring sensational color, life, and vibrancy to your garden, no matter where you live in the US.

Here’s everything you need to know about this plant, as well as tips on how to grow and care for its many different varieties.

What is an anemone flower?

With so many different varieties popping up in home gardens, rockeries, meadows, and wild gardens, the chances are you’ve seen anemone flowers any number of times. As they also make for beautiful enhancements to an arrangement as cut flowers, you might even have marveled at anemone flowers and their leaves in a seasonal spring bouquet from

But what is this flower that takes all manner of shapes, sizes, and colors? Well, wonder no more - read on to find out!

Anemones are perennial plants originating from Europe and particularly the Mediterranean. However, they are common in temperate zones worldwide, with many species being native to North America.

These delicate blooms, which come in single- or double-petaled varieties, can be low-growing or reach up to 48 inches in height, and boast the most exquisite color palette from dainty whites to deep blues and luscious reds, have many varieties. This is excellent news for your garden as, with different cultivars being spring- or autumn-blooming, you can enjoy these pretty flowers almost year-round!

What are the most common varieties of anemones?

Anemone blanda – which is popularly known as windflower – is probably the most well-known cultivar of this plant. Bursting forth with sensational white, pink, and blue blooms, this is a spring-flowering plant with Greek roots. Thus, it is the perfect addition to a Greek-style garden (find more inspiration for a Grecian oasis here).

Other popular varieties include Anemone coronaria, which is also known as ‘Florist’s anemone’ as its tall stems and vibrantly-colored petals are the perfect choice for cut flower arrangements. These are best planted in groups like other flowering plants such as tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, amaryllis and dahlias. Read our growing and care guides for each of these flowers by clicking the relevant plant below:

Anemone nemorosa, also known as wood anemone, is another hardy variety that grows in shade and is one of the earliest-blooming spring flowers.

Finally, the other most popular varieties are autumn-flowering cultivars such as Anemone hupehensis and Anemone x hybrida. Large and bright, these are known as Chinese and Japanese anemones and thus are the perfect addition to a Japanese-style garden.

Why are anemones sometimes known as windflowers?

These plants are sometimes known as windflowers because their name derives from ancient Greek.‘Anemo’ is the Greek term for ‘wind’ and so ‘anemone’ literally translates to‘daughter of the wind.’

If you have ever seen growing anemones flutter in the breeze, you will understand how apt this name is. Their delicate blooms – many varieties of which so closely resemble poppies – bob and dance in the most gentle of breezes, making the name a perfect fit.

How tall do anemones grow?

The height of these plants depends entirely on the variety. Some remain quite small, such as Anemone blanda (or windflower) which typically only reaches 6 inches.

Others, like Anemone coronaria, can reach up to 15 to 20 inches in height. Its imposing length is one of the reasons it is so popular in flower arranging and is often referred to as ‘Florist Anemone’.

Looking for an exceptional flower arrangement filled with fresh-cut flowers like anemones? Here’s our top three flower delivery services for one-off ordering:

Anemone growing zones

One of the best things about anemones and what makes them such wonderful plants for a low-maintenance garden  is the fact they can be grown almost anywhere.

These flowers will grow in USDA hardiness zones 3-10, though suitability does vary according to species.

For example, some anemone plant lower classifications include A. blanda, A. nemorosa, and Japanese anemones A. hupehensis and A. x hybrida, all of which will blossom in Zones 4-8.

Meanwhile, A coronaria does best in zones 7-10.

To get the most from your cultivar and to ensure optimum anemone care, it’s important to know which zone you are in and choose your species accordingly. Alternatively, though these plants are perennials that come back every year, gardeners in colder growing zones can opt to grow these plants as annuals, digging up the old tubers and planting new corms every spring.

How to care for anemones

These flowers require very little maintenance once planted and so caring for them couldn’t be easier. Firstly, choose your variety which will dictate if you plant your tubers or rhizomes in spring or fall.

Soak your tubers overnight and then plant them in rich, fertile soil that is well-draining. Most anemones do best in partially-shaded areas, though A. coronaria can be planted in full sun. You can also plant anemones in pots or containers – an ideal solution for small gardens, townhouse patios, or balconies where space might be an issue.

Once established, all you need to do is to ensure your soil stays slightly moist by watering as needed. This is particularly important if growing your flowers in pots as the soil tends to dry out quicker.

As perennials, these plants will eventually die back after flowering. Allow this to happen before cutting away any dead foliage prior to new growth. If needed, covering your plants with a layer of mulch during winter will help to protect them from the cold, ensuring they bloom back fiercely in the spring.

Finally, it’s important to be aware that some varieties of anemone can be rather invasive and can spread rapidly in a garden. Be sure to plant these varieties in areas of your garden that can tolerate this. You might need to dig up clumps every few years to keep it under control.

Or you can simply sit back and enjoy the carpeted spread of these bright and delicate flowers. We definitely would!

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