Statice, Sea Lavender
Large, leathery, green basal leaves contrast with airy clusters of tiny, delicate flowers on nearly leafless, many-branched stems. The flowers consist of two parts: an outer, papery envelope (the calyx) and an inner part (the corolla). Calyx and corolla are often of different colors. Flowers are good for cutting and keep their color when dried. Plants tolerate heat and many kinds of soil but need good drainage.
From the Canary Islands. Grows to 3 ft. tall, with flower clusters spreading nearly as wide. The calyx is rich purple; the corolla is white. Long spring and summer bloom. Leaves are up to 1 ft. long, including stalks. First-rate beach plant. Often naturalizes in coastal Southern California. Damaged at 25°F/–4°C, but useful even where it freezes out occasionally; nursery-grown seedlings develop quickly.Limonium platyphyllum
Vigorous plant to 2 1/2 ft. tall, covered in a haze of flowers up to 3 ft. wide in summer. The calyx is white; the corolla is bluish; pure white and pink kinds exist. Smooth-edged leaves to 10 in. long.
This Mediterranean native annual is widely grown for use as a fresh or dried cut flower. Grows to 1 1/2 ft. high and 1 ft. wide, with basal leaves lobed nearly to midrib and winged flower stems. The calyx is blue, lavender, or rose; the corolla is white. Improved garden strains come in yellow, apricot, orange, peach, rose, light blue, deep blue, purple, and white. For spring and summer bloom, sow indoors and move it to the garden when the weather warms up; or sow outdoors in early spring for later bloom.
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