As a group, the genus Anemone consists of 100 species of plants
including spring, summer and fall blooming flowers. The fall
flowering anemones species are the showstoppers of the group.
Fall anemones, also called Japanese anemones, bloom from late
July to early October. None of the anemones originated from
Japan, so it makes more sense to call them fall anemones rather
than Japanese anemones.
Fall anemones will grow in full sun but prefer a partial
shade location, performing the best with morning sun and
afternoon shade. Foliage tends to burn in hot, dry summer
conditions. Soil should be fertile, moist, well-drained and high
in organic matter. Plants prefer consistently moist soil, so
mulching is beneficial. Plants can be killed by wet winter
Slow to establish, fall anemones will become prolific when
grown in a preferred site. Be sure to give the plants room by
spacing them 2 to 3 feet apart in the garden. Spring planting is
best. Sometimes the plants will start to spill out of their
space; in that case, just dig out the unwanted intruders and
share them with friends.
Mounded plants will grow 2 to 5 feet tall. Taller plants may
need staking. Place plants in the mid-border to background of
The dark green foliage is attractive from spring to fall.
Foliage darkens after a hard frost. It is best to remove the
foliage in late fall.
Flowers are either white, pink, rose or lilac. There are
single, semi-double or double cultivars. The slightly cupped
flowers are 2 to 3 inches in diameter. Flowers donít need to be
deadheaded to prolong bloom.
Some of the fall blooming anemone species are Anemone
hupehensis, Anemone x hybrida and Anemone tomentosa.
All of these species produce similar flowers but have a few
Hybrid anemones, Anemone x
hybrida, are hybrids of several species and are well-adapted
to our gardens. Plants can reach 5 feet in height. Cultivars
grows 3 to 4 feet and has double pink flowers.
Honorine Jobert has a single white
flower. Discovered in 1858, it is still the most popular
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Anemone hupehensis flowers a week or so earlier and is generally
shorter (2 to 3 feet) than A. x hybrida. A. hupehensis also
has smaller flowers and tolerates drier, sunnier sites. Cultivars
has deep rose-pink, semi-double flowers.
(Prince Henry) has early flowering, rosy red, semi-double
September Charm produces single,
Anemone tomentosa is an earlier
flowering anemone and more tolerant of temperature extremes than
A. hybrida. The A. tomentosa is called the grape leaf
anemone because its dark green leaves resemble grape leaves. The
foliage has a white pubescence on the underside of the leaves.
- Robutissima is a cultivar that produces mauve-pink flowers
held above the foliage. Adapted to both sun and shade,
Robutissima is a hardy selection.
Consider adding fall anemones to the garden. They add beauty to
the perennial garden just as summer bloomers are fading away and
just before mums begin to bloom.
[By JENNIFER FISHBURN, horticulture
University of Illinois Extension, Logan-Menard-Sangamon Unit]