Verbascum 'Helen Johnson'

Verbascum ‘Helen Johnson’


  • Botanical name: Verbascum 'Helen Johnson'
  • Common name: Mullein
  • Family: Scrophulariaceae
  • Plant Type: Perennial
Flower colour:



Foliage colour:



Verbascums are eye-catching, drought-tolerant plants with felted, silver-grey rosettes of large leaves. Tall, furry flower-spikes emerge bearing wide-open, (usually) yellow flowers, in early to midsummer. Plants self-seed readily.


Verbascum ‘Helen Johnson’ is a charming perennial cultivar bearing flowers held on tall spires that are peach as they open, fading to a rusty orange. It’s ideal for growing in a sunny mixed or herbaceous border, and is also suitable for growing in containers.


For best results grow Verbascum ‘Helen Johnson’ in well-drained, neutral to alkaline soil in sun or partial shade. Cut old flowering stems to ground level to prolong flowering. Plants are the caterpillar foodplant of the mullein moth, Cucullia verbasci, which causes unsightly holes in the foliage. If possible grow ‘Helen Johnson’ towards the centre of the border, so other plants mask the holey leaves, or grow wild verbascums nearby, onto which you can transfer the caterpillars.

How to grow Verbascum 'Helen Johnson'

  • Plant size

    90cm height

    40cm spread

  • Aspect

    South facing, west facing

  • Position in border


  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Hardiness: Hardy
  • Soil type: Chalky / alkaline / well drained / light / sandy

Plant calendar

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Do not Plant in January

Do not Plant in February

Do not Plant in March

Do not Plant in April

Do Plant in May

Do Plant in June

Do not Plant in July

Do not Plant in August

Do not Plant in September

Do not Plant in October

Do not Plant in November

Do not Plant in December

Take cuttings
Take cuttings

Do Take cuttings in January

Do not Take cuttings in February

Do not Take cuttings in March

Do not Take cuttings in April

Do not Take cuttings in May

Do not Take cuttings in June

Do not Take cuttings in July

Do not Take cuttings in August

Do not Take cuttings in September

Do Take cuttings in October

Do Take cuttings in November

Do Take cuttings in December

Verbascum 'Helen Johnson' and wildlife

Verbascum 'Helen Johnson' is known for attracting bees, beneficial insects and other pollinators. It is a caterpillar food plant and has nectar/pollen rich flowers.

Attractive to Bees

Attractive to Beneficial insects

Does not attract Birds

Does not attract Butterflies​/​Moths

Attractive to Other pollinators

Is Verbascum 'Helen Johnson' poisonous?

Verbascum 'Helen Johnson' has no toxic effects reported.

No reported toxicity to:

No reported toxicity to Birds

No reported toxicity to Cats

No reported toxicity to Dogs

No reported toxicity to Horses

No reported toxicity to Livestock

No reported toxicity to People

Plants that go well with Verbascum 'Helen Johnson'

Anemanthele lessoniana

Anemanthele lessoniana

New zealand wind grass