Potentilla nepalensis 'Miss Willmott' is a delicious variety of the good tempered herbaceous cinquefoil, with masses of rounded, cherry coloured flowers with a large area of red at the centre of the flower. Named for the British gardener, Miss Ellen Ann Willmott, the foliage is rich green with strawberry plant-like foliage. It flowers for weeks throughout summer.
Potentillas are a very durable, hardy plant, tolerating drought, flooding, extreme cold, and easily survive transplanting. They thrive in most soil conditions, and stand shade and sun alike. Although they prefer well-drained, reasonably rich soil, they will also tolerate clay, rocky, or slightly alkaline soils.
They should be planted in a sunny area which receives light shade in the hottest part of the day to prevent the flower colour from fading. Flowering over a long period, it forms a low-spreading clump that looks good in a sunny cottage garden border, raised bed or border.
- Awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit
Potentilla nepalensis 'Miss Willmott' has been awarded the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit (AGM).
Sowing: Sow late summer to autumn or late winter to late spring
Seed sown early will often produce flowers the same season.
Sow seed on the surface of lightly firmed, moist seed compost in pots or trays. Just cover the seed with a light sprinkling of compost or vermiculite. Keep at a temperature of between 18 to 22°C (65 to 70°F)
Keep the surface of the compost moist but not waterlogged; water from beneath the tray, never directly onto the seeds. Sealing the container inside a polythene bag after sowing is beneficial. Germination should be between 14 to 30 days
When large enough to handle, transplant seedlings into 7.5cm (3in) pots. Gradually acclimatise to outdoor conditions for 10 to 15 days before planting out after all risk of frost, 38cm (15in) apart. Provide any ordinary, well-drained soil in full sun.
Although drought-hardy when established, to bloom its best it should have moderate watering during the summer months. Seasonal fertilizing with an evergreen fertilizer isn't essential, but can benefit especially a clump that is in a crowded perennial garden.
The main flowering period is June, July and August and it usually continues to first frosts. If at any point it stops flowering, cut the stems back to get a second flush of leaves and buds. It might die back naturally at the end of the season otherwise cut back stems that remain to ground level in spring.
Potentilla is a long-lived plant that can be divided every three years or so, in spring.
Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower Borders and Beds, Rock gardens, Containers. Coastal.
Potentilla is a genus containing over 300 species of annual, biennial and perennial herbaceous flowering plants in the rose family, Rosaceae. Potentilla are generally only found throughout the northern continents of the world (holarctic), though some may even be found in montane biomes of the New Guinea Highlands.
Potentilla nepalensis is a species that is native to East Asia and West Himalayas, from Pakistan to Nepal. The species can be found in grazing grounds and cultivated areas, at elevations of 2,100 to 2,700 metres (6,900 to 8,900 ft) above sea level.
Nepalese potentilla is used in the Western Himalayas to treat burns, and for other uses, though efficacy is to date unproven. The starchy root is also regarded as edible, at a pinch.
The genus name has its origin is the French ‘potence’ meaning ‘potent’ (strong, powerful or mighty). The origin of these words is the Latin potens, which has the same meaning. Historically it was believed to be a potent medicinal plant.
The species nepalensis means 'of or from Nepal'
Pronounced poh-ten-TILL-uh: nap-ahl-EN-sis. They are commonly called cinquefoils in English. The plants have a five-fingered arrangement of leaves, to which the name ‘cinquefoil’, meaning ‘five-leaf’ alludes.
Named for Miss Ellen Ann Willmott (1858-1934), a British gardener, best remembered for plants named for her. Her garden is at Warley Place near Brentwood in Essex, part of which became a reserve for the Essex Naturalists' Trust in 1978.
Miss Ellen Willmott:
Miss Ellen Willmott was born in 1858. Independently wealthy, gardening became her passion. She became renowned for her knowledge of plants, her patronage of plant hunters (notably Ernest Wilson), the book she published on roses and her prickly temperament.
In 1897, she shared the Royal Horticultural Society's Victoria Medal of Honour with Gertrude Jekyll.
In 1910, she published the Genus Rosa, still considered the definitive work on species roses.
She never married and instead bought properties throughout Essex, in France and in Italy, and built gardens there, so that at one time she had more than 100 gardeners on her pay-roll, who shipped seeds all around the world for other gardeners.
Many a garden to this day owes a debt to the hundreds of strains developed at Warley. A book issued in 1909, Warley Garden in Spring & Summer, includes thirty photogravure plates that reveal the excellence of Ellen's gardens in their heyday before the first world war.
Miss Willmott had a peculiar habit: she carried seeds of the silvery-blue Eryngium giganteum Bieberstein and scattered them in other people's gardens. (The spiny plant was said to match her personality.)
Plant-hunters who, as well as bringing her plants, repaid her in the usual way, by naming some of the species they discovered after her. Her legacy is the plants that she introduced. She had over 60 plants named after her or her home Warley Place.
The specific epithets of warleyensis and willmottianum are named for her.
Plants associated with these names include: Iris warleyensis, Campanula 'Warleyensis', Epimedium warleyensis 'Ellen Willmott', Rosa warleyensis, Lysionotus warleyensis, Corylopsis warleyensis, Ceratostigma willmotti, and Potentilla nepalensis ‘Miss Willmott’
- Awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit
- Additional Information
Packet Size 33mg Average Seed Count 100 Seeds Family Rosaceae Genus Potentilla Species nepalensis Cultivar Miss Willmott Synonym Potentilla nepalensis willmottiae, Potentilla willmottiae Common Name Nepal Cinquefoil Hardiness Hardy Perennial Flowers Carmine Pink Natural Flower Time June - August Foliage Rich green with strawberry plant-like foliage Height 60-90cm (24-36in) Spread 60cm (24in) Position Prefers Full Sun Soil Prefers well drained / light Germination 14 to 30 days