Garden question: where does my plant flower best?

Every week, garden expert Lodewijk Hoekstra answers garden questions from readers. This week about a poorly flowering Phlomis.

Henriรซtte wrote to me this week that she suffers from a badly flowering Phlomis, a perennial plant with typical wreath-like flowers on a stem.

I myself am also crazy about it and have several in the garden. They also bloom minimally in my garden.

To be honest, I dont know the answer to this question directly, so I did some research. It turns out that it is a real sun worshipper who has to stand on well-drained soil and who does not make too many demands on the soil.

For me, the plant does not stand in the sun all day and therefore, unfortunately, it does not do so well, I think. Henriette, I think we both have a job to do this autumn: transplant the Phlomis!


Plants do not grow everywhere. For example, I have a perennial plant called Anemone Honorine Jobert. Really a picture to see, it blooms beautifully with white flowers late in the year.

In some places it does perfectly well and in others it does not at all. If a plant does not catch on, it is wise to choose a different species and not to try the same one every time.

Just look on the internet or ask in the garden centre what it does well and then look at the location, which is very important.

Is it poor sandy soil or heavy clay soil, in the shade or in the sun, or will it become a pot? All these factors have an influence and determine whether a plant will do well.

Of course, a plant can do so well that you have not thought beforehand about its size and how to prune it. Jaap, for example, bought an Eucalyptus tree and wonders how to proceed because it grows so fast.

Well Jaap, this tree, which originates from (sub)tropical areas, is also found in southern Europe. It is a fast grower that can grow up to 30 metres high, but I dont think thats the intention!


You will have to prune the plant to get and keep the desired shape. This is best done in the summer, in the middle of the growing season in a warm period. Pruning in winter can cause frost damage and in a wet period in summer pruning can lead to disease.

It may be necessary to add a tree pole, should the tree grow very fast and still have little support at the roots.