Prunella grandiflora ‘Pink Loveliness’ –
PINK SELF HEAL FOR ROSES
Prunella ‘Pink Loveliness’ forms a non-invasive, mat of foliage all year, which hugs the ground tightly.
This all helps to stop water evaporation, and suppress weeds.
Of course this is useful, but Prunella grandiflora ‘Pink Loveliness’ also provides lovely flowers. .
Blooming hardy ground-cover
‘Pink Loveliness’ blooms with rich pink spires of hooded flowers, generously repeating in spring, summer & autumn.
So it is a perfect garden ground-cover, as well as a wonderful companion for roses.
Self Heal for roses
Prunella is much valued as a companion plant for roses, to help cut down the incidence of “Black Spot” disease.
Especially valued for organically managed rose gardens, and where you wish to avoid the use of chemicals.
You may have noticed that “Black Spot” always starts on the bottom leaves and works its way up the bush.
This is because “Black Spot” are soil borne spores which leap up the rose when particles of soil splash up with rain or watering.
So by planting dense Prunella around and under the roses, you are cutting the chain of infection, and cutting the need for chemical use.
Some traditional rosarians also swear by Prunella’s ancient use as a disinfectant, to help cleanse the surface of the soil.
An ancient disinfectant
Prunella has also been valued in herbal medicine for centuries, primarily as a disinfectant.
So two thousand years ago, Dioscorides the ancient physician, was using Prunella to cure inflammation of the throat and tonsils.
Then one thousand years ago it became a popular salad ingredient to help combat diabetes.
Brunella became Prunella
By five hundred years ago in Germany, Prunella was the sovereign remedy for horrible necrotic gum ulcers.
The ulcers were called “die Breuen” or “Brunella”, and this is probably how the name Prunella evolved, as “Brunella” became Prunella.
Chinese medicine still uses Prunella frequently today; and modern western chemical research is showing promise in treatments against diabetic, heart and cancer diseases.
So maybe those old rose gardeners are right, that “Self Heal for Roses” does help disinfect the soil.
Growing Prunella grandiflora ‘Pink Loveliness’:
– Height with flowers: 15cm. approx.
– Width: Rhizomes spread to make a dense carpet to approx. 50cm. diameter. It is not invasive.
– Position: Grows enthusiastically in Full Sun to Half Shade / Dappled Sunlight positions. Suits a wide range of conditions including seaside gardens.
– Soil: Prunella is tough and willing. It will make make a go of it in a wide range of soils, from sandy, through ordinary average garden loam, to clay soils. A willing grower in clay. Easily tolerates soils that have a high lime content, but will also grow easily in acid conditions. Drought tolerant when established, and will thrive on normal, average watering. Enjoys being well drained.
– Frost: Toughly, totally frost hardy down to well below -10C. Suitable for severe frost areas.
– Growth: Evergreen ground cover perennial. The stems grow thickly but flat on the ground, and so help to prevent both weed growth, and “black spot splash” from infecting rose leaves.
– Care: Very easy to grow and low maintenance. You could remove spent flower stems if you wish to tidy, but it is not necessary. You can even mow over it if you wish. This is such an un-fussy plant.
– Beneficial for wildlife: The flowers are rich in both pollen and nectar for bees and butterflies.
– Deer & rabbit resistant: Prunella is not top of their menu chart, though not completely immune to nibbling if the pests are really hungry.
– Origin: Native to meadows and woodlands in Europe where it successfully competes with the grasses.
– History & traditional uses: Prunella has a long history as both a medicinal herb and a culinary herb. In traditional village medicine it was used to treat anything from throat inflammations to packing infected wounds. It was a culinary herb used either raw or cooked.