Verbascum blattaria albiflorum | Moth Mullein ‘White Blush’
Verbascums are a wonderful plant for making a garden feel natural, producing masses of flowers without taking up lots of space on the ground. Their vertical flower spikes help any border succeed visually, leading the eye up to the sky.
Verbascum blattaria, a biennial, comes in both a yellow-flowered form a and white-flowered form, of which we sell both.. The white form is commonly marketed as albiflora or ‘White Blush’. The common name (Moth Mullein) is thought to come from the resemblance of the furry stamens to the intricately haired antennae of moths.
In its first year, smooth, deep green basal rosettes form and lie close to the ground, giving no hint of next year’s tall and graceful flower stalks. The rosettes overwinter and start to show signs of further development in the spring of the second year, when slender, multi-branched stems emerge and elongate, reaching an ultimate height of 3-4 feet for the white form. Though tall, Moth Mullein’s general effect is airy enough to be used towards the front of the border. Neatly folded, dark-crimson angular buds pop open to reveal large white flowers blushed on the petal backs with pink, helping to contrast the intricately furred purple stamens tipped with brilliant orange pollen. Blooms unfold in late June or early July, and continue through summer, ending in September. The flowers are attractive to all sorts of insects, including nocturnal moths and early-foraging bees.
Verbascum blattaria is an interesting and beautiful plant, and a splendid example of a non-aggressive and well-behaved introduced species. In the U.S. it is most common in the Midwest, Northeast, and Pacific Northwest. It tolerates disturbance and is often found along roadsides, pastures, waste ground, rocky stream banks, roadsides, railroads, or growing through cracks in abandoned roadways.
Deadhead for more blooms. Reseeds moderately. The tiny seeds are abundant and can remain viable for decades, or even centuries in soil. However, Mullien is easily managed by manually removing the plants before seed-set, not disturbing the soil, and/or by establishing dense vegetative cover that will prevent seed germination. Sow seed indoors, or direct-sow outdoors most anytime of the year.
Prefers full sun in well drained soils. Drought tolerant, low maintenance, deer resistant, and attracts a wide variety of insects.
Sun exposure: Full sun
Mature height: 3 ft
Mature width: 6-12 inches
Hardiness zones: 5-9
*Please note: We cannot ship Verbascum blattaria Moth Mullein seeds to Colorado at this time. Checkout is disabled for this product in this state.