Agapanthus are easy to grow in containers and in the border, and are virtually trouble-free.
They flower for a long time, in shades of blue, purple and white, are low-maintenance and relatively trouble-free. Discover 10 agapanthus to grow.
According to agapanthus grower and expert Steve Hickman, the most common problem with agapanthus is that the plant has plenty of leaves, but no flowers.
Here are his tips for growing healthy agapanthus that will produce masses of flowers, year after year.
Deciduous agapanthus are fully hardy and can be grown in pots and borders all over the country. Evergreen varieties are not fully hardy. If you live northwards of London or in a cold area, grow these in pots, so that you can give them protection in winter.
Pale blue flowers of Agapanthus ‘Blue Moon’
Use the right compost mix
Agapanthus need good drainage. If growing in pots, mix two parts good-quality multipurpose compost or John Innes No. 2 or No. 3 with one part coarse sand, horticultural grit or gravel. If growing plants in the ground, grow them in well drained soil, or add some grit when planting.
Mixing good quality compost for planting
Restrict the roots when young
When agapanthus are young, they like to have their roots restricted. You can put three smaller plants in a 12 in (45cm) pot. After two years, repot the plants into slightly larger pots. If you’re starting with a larger plant, plant it in a 12 inch pot.
Watering three small agapanthus planted together in a 12 inch pot to constrain the roots
Give them a sunny spot
Agapanthus hail from the south African Cape, so they appreciate plenty of sunshine. They will tolerate partial shade for a few hours of the day however.
Pale blue flowers of Agapanthus Margaret
Feed them regularly
Agapanthus appreciate a high potash feed to encourage flowers – specialist agapanthus feeds are available. Start feeding from mid-March and continue every two to three weeks until mid-September.
Applying dissolved plant feed to agapanthus in a planter
Prepare them for winter
Water plants in early November, then stop until early March. Protect tender varieties in pots by putting them in a cold greenhouse, shed or garage, or under the house eaves. Mulch deciduous agapanthus in borders in autumn to protect flower buds formed in summer.
Purple-blue flowers of Agapanthus ‘Tornado’
Thanks to Steve Hickman of Hoyland Plant Centre for providing the information in this feature.
White agapanthus flowers beside feathery fennel
Plants to combine with agapanthus