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Maltese Cross (Lychnis chalcedonica)


Light:

Full to part sun

Flowering:

Summer - prolonged by deadheading

Soil:

Widely tolerant but avoid very rich soil

Height:

36 to 48 inches

Color:

Scarlet red

Hardiness:

Very hardy - zone 3

Uses:

Border. naturalizing. cut flowers

Care:

Fairly easy but transplant with care. Not long lived but reseeds readily. Attracts bees and hummingbirds.

Native:

No

Comments:

Large, bright red, phlox-like flower heads appearing from May through July attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The plant reaches heights to 3 feet making it a good choice for the back of the border. It is also an excellent species for naturalizing and wildflower gardens where it will self sow quite readily.

Maltese Cross is quite drought tolerant. It will grow in damper soils and shadier locations but will not be as long lived under these conditions and will have a lankier appearance. Removing dead flower heads will encourage additional blooms. Plants should be spaced about 18 inches apart and divided when clumps become woody or show signs of dying out in the center.

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