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Gaura

Gaura lindheimeri

Gaura, which is also known as Lindheimer's beeblossom, is a tirelessly flowering summer shrub that beautifies every sunny location, providing a charming sight, whether on its own or planted in a group. With its delicate, butterfly-shaped flowers it enriches natural plantings of all kinds, but it is also a flowing element in a formal gravel garden, on lawns or as a delicate rose companion.

If you design a trendy prairie garden, Gaura also fits in wonderfully, as it comes from the vast prairies of North America. Also, it is easy to care for as a potted plant for a balcony or terrace. Gaura lindheimeri, the botanical name, is ideally suited for this because it tolerates temporary drought without complaint and can be wonderfully combined with other summer flowers. The appearance of numerous, industrious honey bees and butterflies is guaranteed with a beeblossom, too!

These graceful plants can, depending on the variety, grow up to 150 centimetres high. Above all, there are the upright, slightly curved stems with the pretty white or pink flowers that conquer the vertical and ensure ease in any planting. Gauras are also used as cut plants for vases.

An Elegant Perennial Flower for Beds and Balconies

Gaura lindheimeri is a true flowering wonder that thrills from July to the first frost! It is all the more astonishing that every single flower fades within a day. Take a look at our Lubera® range! In addition to the original species and the plants with pure white flowers, the pink varieties are also very popular.

• The variety 'Summer Breeze' shows white flowers and can reach 120 centimetres in height. It proves to be quite robust and stable in the garden.

• The also white-flowering 'Whirling Butterflies' is a beautiful selection with particularly large flowers. This up to 70 centimetres high variety likes to develop its flowering clouds in the background of a perennial flowerbed.

'Siskiyou Pink' scores with its sought-after pink flowers and reaches up to about 80 centimetres high with its bushy, upright growth.

'Rosy Jane' enriches the Gaura range with its two-tone flowers that appear white with a pink border. Their stems can turn slightly reddish. This rich flowering variety reaches up to about 70 centimetres in height. It is also ideally suited for planting window boxes.

   
 
   
 

Portrait of Gaura lindheimeri

Gaura belongs to the family of the evening primrose family (Onagraceae). It comes from southern North America and has its natural habitats in prairies and sparse pine forests. The genus includes about 20 different species. The species Gaura lindheimeri and its varieties have the highest garden value. Their growth is upright and bushy; the leaves are lanceolate and are up to about eight centimetres long. They are usually serrated or slightly indented. The fruits of the butterfly-like flowers are nondescript capsules. As garden plants, they were introduced at the end of the 19th century in Europe.

The characteristic flowers, which are reminiscent of butterflies, are usually four-petalled, with fine-pollen stalks protruding from the centre. Beeblossoms tend to be short-lived plants, but they are happy to self-seed.

Gaura plants only tolerate temperatures down to -15 degrees Celsius for a short time. Basically, the white flowering varieties are more robust than the pink flowering ones.

Location and Soil

Gaura varieties like a sunny to full sun, rather dry location, which is as protected as possible from strong winds, otherwise the flower stems can easily bend. Particularly favourable is a south-exposed site on a warm wall. The soil should be permeable, sandy or gravelly and not too rich in humus and nutrients.

Waterlogging and above all winter wetness should be avoided! Heavy soils or a soil rich in humus should be enriched with sand and gravel, if possible, in order to increase the permeability. Otherwise, there is a risk that the perennial will not survive the winter.

Planting

If you buy Gaura, you can plant it from spring to autumn. The best time is of course in the spring when no strong night frosts are to be expected. Then the perennial can root well until winter.

About six plants can be set per square metre, or the planting distance should be about 50 centimetres.

When cultivating the plant in a container, you should pay attention to a sufficiently thick drainage layer of pottery shards or lava chippings in the bottom area, so that excess water can run off well.

Maintenance

Guara plants are perennials that need little to no care when they are planted out. Only with very long-lasting heat periods, you should water them a little. When keeping Gaura plants in a container, it is advisable to only reach for the watering can when the topsoil layer has dried. Fertilisation in the planter should take place at most once a month – and only until August – using commercially available liquid fertiliser.

Pruning

If possible do not reach for the pruning shears in autumn! As with other late summer flowering plants, the stems can still be a beautiful ornament in the garden even in winter and protect the underground parts of the plant from frost. Cut off the old stalks of the beeblossom in the spring as it starts to sprout – this measure also promotes compact growth. Here you can cut the plant to 5 - 10 centimetres. Even when the flowers fade in the summer months, it can be cut in order to stimulate new flowering.

Overwintering

Winter wetness is the big enemy of Gaura lindheimeri, as the plants are adapted to dry steppe soils in a continental climate. A good winter protection can consist of, for example, leaves and brushwood. The foliage forms a protective blanket and should be applied thickly around the plant. The brushwood ensures that the leaves are not blown away. At the beginning of March, you can remove the protection so that the ground can warm up again through the sun's rays.

Guara planted in a pot or container should be kept frost-free but cool during the winter. Cut the above-ground parts of plants above the ground before overwintering. Ideally in the winter, the temperatures should not rise above 5°C, thus an unheated garage would be perfect. Since this plant is deciduous, the room can also be dark. The heating in winter should be extremely economical and only serve to prevent the soil from drying out completely. Already in early spring, starting in February, you can bring the plant to a warmer, light place behind glass. After the middle of May, you can place your Gaura outside again.

 

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