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Achillea ‘Moonshine’ 2020 Perennial Plant of the Year

  • Common Name: Moonshine yarrow
  • Height: 45–60 cm
  • Spread: 45–60 cm
  • Exposure: Full Sun
  • Colour: Olive green leaves are covered in soft white hairs giving the foliage a silvery grey cast. Flowers are lemon-yellow.
  • Bloom Time: Early Summer, Summer
  • Plant Type: Perennial
  • Soil Moisture: Average
  • Plant Uses: Attracts Butterflies, Border, Cut Flower, Deer Resistant, Fragrant, Good Texture/Form, Rabbit Resistant, Water-wise
  • Zone: 3A
  • Fragrance: Pleasantly aromatic
  • Recommended: Requires full sun and well-drained soils. Is a well-behaved clump-former that never spreads beyond its allotted space.
  • Description:

    Achillea ‘Moonshine’. “A yarrow” you say, disbelievingly. Moonshine yarrow does not behave like its beautiful but thuggish cousin Achillea millifolium. Instead, it is a lovely, well-behaved clump-former that never spreads beyond its allotted space. A hybrid between Achillea clyeolata (Balkan yarrow), a low mat-forming species, and Achillea aegyptiaca var. ‘Taygetea’, an upright species native to Greece, ‘Moonshine’ inherited several excellent traits from its parents: drought tolerance, moderate size (60 cm tall and wide), soft colour and silver foliage. What really sets it apart from its more aggressive relatives is that it is sterile so it won’t reseed throughout the garden.

    Olive green leaves are covered in soft white hairs giving the foliage a silvery grey cast. Leaves are finely dissected and fern-like creating the perfect backdrop for the dense flattened corymbs of tiny lemon-yellow flowers. Corymbs average 5–7.5 cm across, are upright and long lasting. Smaller side shoots develop below the central head and continue throughout the summer. Snipping off spent blooms ensures an extended show.

    Achillea ‘Moonshine’ is easy to incorporate into any sunny perennial border. All it requires is sun and well-drained soils. Its softer colour and silvery foliage allow it to blend well with soft-coloured flower companions as well as with hotter colour schemes too.

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