Anemone X hybrida (Japanese Anemone)
Japanese anemones (Anemone x hybrida) flower with delicate charm, refinement, and sophistication at a time when most other late-blooming perennials are declining and ready to enter winter dormancy.
These plants have a graceful habit with erect and stately branching stems from 1 to 5 ft. tall with lobed, slightly hairy dark green leaves. Flowers are more or less saucer-shaped and vary from 2 to 4 in. in diameter, depending upon the variety, with 6–15 tepals (identical petals and sepals). There are single, semi-double, and fully double forms in colors ranging from frosty white through soft rosy pinks to dramatic deep rose.
Anemones combine beautifully with other perennials along the border and in perennial beds and may also be used in front of shrubs or under the canopy of trees. The only caution is to manage their growth over time to prevent unwanted vigorous spreading. Plants are readily available in local nurseries during fall, the best time to plant them.
Few such exquisite flowers can be so easily grown. Culture is simple, once you are willing to meet their few requirements. They thrive best in situations slightly shaded from hot afternoon sun or in dappled shade all day. Good drainage is essential. Soil should be deeply prepared with organic matter incorporated to assist drainage and add fertility then covered with mulch to retain moisture. If you provide them with regular watering during the growing months, they will reward you with larger flowers.
Anemones thrive in all but the hottest and driest areas of the garden. They are very cold hardy so will perform well in even the chilliest parts of the county. The degree of dormancy will depend on your garden’s microclimate and the severity of winter. Anemones are very late in breaking through the ground in the spring, and often it isn't until late April that they show their renewed growth.
In midsummer, stake flower stems if necessary to prevent flopping. After plants die back in winter, remove spent foliage to the compost pile. To prevent unwanted growth from underground runners, thin clumps every year or two.