Last year, I think it was for Mothers Day, the kids bought Beth two Epimedium plants that they had obtained by going directly to Daryl Probst who runs Garden Vision Nursery in Massachusetts. He specializes in breeding and growing these delightful little shade lovers. By the time they brought the plants down in July they were long past flowering so that it is just now that we are seeing the blooms. And what wonderful blooms they are. If you don’t take the trouble to look closely you would never realize that they are like tiny orchids (although the ‘Lilac Seedling’ is easily twice as big as any other Epimedium that we have. Even aside from the flowers though the leaves are quite nice and you could grow them for the foliage alone.
The other gift plant was a hybrid of Epimedium rubrum. It is quite pretty in it’s own right even if ‘Lilac Seedling is the big scene stealer.
Sweetheart also has pretty leaves, but again not quite as striking as Lilac Seedling.
Our experience is that Epimediums are tough little plants. Like ferns they look delicate but come back season after season. We keep adding more every year. Even out in the woods they are proving to be survivors. So far the animals don’t touch them.