Verbascum phoenicum | Purple Mullein ‘Violetta’
An annual (if sowed early enough), a biennial (most often), or (sometimes) a short lived perennial, Purple Mullein starts off as a basal rosette of dark green shiny leaves which make way for graceful spires of blossoms in shades of purple, deep rose, violet, pink, and white.
Verbascum phoeniceum is fast growing, fairly drought tolerant, and low maintenance. Commonly found on dry, stony hillsides and open woodlands, but is also well-adapted to cottage, gravel, and rock gardens, in naturalized areas, or alone in mass plantings. Will self-sow, but is not as a nuisance. The seedlings may vary slightly from the parent plant, thus creating welcome surprises.
Wonderful live cut flowers and the dried stalks with seed pods can even add interest to dried arrangements.
The tiny seeds are abundant and can remain viable for decades in the soil. However, Mullein is easily managed by manually removing the plants before seed-set, or not disturbing the soil, or establishing dense vegetative cover that will prevent seed germination. Sow seed indoors, or sow outdoors late spring to early fall. Prefers full sun in well drained soils.
Deer resistant and attracts butterflies and other insects.
Type: Biennial or short-lived perennial
Sun exposure: Full sun
Mature height: 18-30 inches
Mature width: 10-18 inches
Hardiness zones: 4-9