The Cottage Smallholder

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Childhood perennials

Bergenia and stachys

Bergenia and stachys

I stayed at home today. Can’t seem to kick off the laryngitis so spent most of the day in bed, with the Min Pins and a hottie.

This evening D and I strolled in the garden.
“What are these?” He touched the large evergreen waxy leaves gently.
“Bear’s Ears. Bergenia. Ours have pink flowers in the spring.”
“And what are these?”
“Lamb’s Ears. Stachys byzantine. Touch them. They’re as soft and silky as a Min Pin pup.”

I’ve included these two perennials in all my gardens. Flowers that I remember growing in gardens when I was a child. Both plants enjoy growing in sunny dry flower beds and are a perfect foil for each other.

It’s so easy to forget the importance of touch when exploring a garden.

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  1. I love Bergenia leaves and like Magic Cochin have always known them as Elephant’s Ears. Am so sorry you are feeling below par again but it means that the MinPins have been enjoying a lot of your time lately in the human dog-basket.x

  2. Belinda

    I have both of these plants as well & love them as they divide so easily.

    I came in to say the same as Magic Cochin, almost word for word, luckily I saw that “the undergardeners” had attacked it in MC’s blog earlier in the year so I planted mine by breaking it in 2 & leaving half in the front garden which is free from chickens here. Lucky too, as my girls did the same thing, but dont seem to have finished yet. They ate the flower stems that were just starting too. Maddening.

  3. Michela

    Good luck for your laryngitis! I hope you’ll be better soon!
    Greetings from an Italian garden!


  4. magic cochin

    LOL ‘Bear’s ears’ – we always called them ‘Elephant’s ears’. Our hens ate ours! All of it! Now it’s recovered and they are ignoring it – I can only put it down to a blatant act of vandalism!!!!

    There were Berginia flowers in the flower arrangements at our wedding 🙂


  5. I regularly planted these in the school gardens where I worked – the children loved them.
    Rosie x

  6. Lambs ear is one plant I always have near my vegetable garden because it is a bee magnet when it’s in bloom. The blooms aren’t much to look at – very small lavender flowers on a tallish floppy stem – but the bees adore it.

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