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Acanthus montanus

Bear's breeches

Garden

Wishlist

  • Acanthus montanus | Copyright Greenplantswap 2017

Features

  • BloomsJune to August
  • Height1.8m to 2m
  • Growth HabitRosette or Stalked clump
  • Flower ColourPale pink
  • Leaf ColourDark green, silver

Description

Acanthus montanus (Bear's breeches). Syn. Acanthus barteri. This soft-stemmed shrub has dark glossy green leaves with some silvering, deeply sinuate to shallowly pinnatifid, and the margins are coarsely spiny. Very pale pink flowers appear in summer. The upper bract is larger than the lower.

Characteristics

Perennial, Deciduous, Rhizome, Herbaceous

Origin

West Africa

Interest and use

Grown for foliage and structural interest. Also used in traditional medicine to treat various ailments in West Africa, including high blood pressure, coughs, gastro-intestinal diseases, venereal diseases and painful menses.

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  • Acanthus montanus | Copyright Greenplantswap 2017

Needs

  • LightAny
  • HardinessFrost tender (min 5°C)
  • SoilSandy, Gritty, Loamy
  • Soil pH6.0 to 8.0
  • WaterSemi-moist

Cultivation

This plant has long roots and so does well on sloping ground. It can tolerate both drought and sunny positions but prefers shade.

Propagation

By seed or division in early autumn or spring, or by root cuttings in winter.

Pests, diseases or disorders

Powdery mildew may be a problem. Also, snails and caterpillars may damage new growth.

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