Common name: Garden Verbena, Mock Verbena, Mock vervain
Garden verbena plants can transform your garden with beautiful multi-colored flowers in thick bunches, attracting butterflies and pollinating insects. They are grown as an annuals or perennials depending on the climate conditions. These plants typically grow to a height of 15 to 45 cm with a spread of 30 to 60 cm.
Garden Verbenas are known for their compact, mounding growth habit and small, dark-green, lance-shaped or oval leaves that grow opposite on the stems. Leaves are toothed and have a rough texture, growing to about 3-7 cm in length.
During summer and fall season, the plant produces clusters of small, showy flowers that come in a variety of colors like white, pink, purple, red, white, red, deep pink, lavender and also combinations of these colors. Some of the Garden Verbena flowers have a small white center that brings even more contrast to the bright petals.
The flower diameter generally ranges from 3 to 5 cm. They have a tubular shape with 5 petals and are great at attracting butterflies and bees because of their vibrant color and abundant nectar. After flowering, garden verbenas produce small, dry fruits that contain seeds.
Garden Verbena plants can tolerate partial shade, but they generally need 6-8 hours of bright sunlight to produce flowers. These plants prefer well-drained soil as waterlogging can cause stem rot.
Regular fertilization is required during flowering season, but not during winter when the plant is dormant. Pruning or deadheading can help the plant stay bushy and rounded.
Garden Verbena plants can be grown as border plants, low height hedges, or even in hanging pots and baskets. Some cultivars are so beautiful that they have received Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit. Some of the popular hybrids are Sissinghurst, Silver Anne, Claret, Toronto, Quartz series and so on.
These plants have some medicinal uses in the treatment of sinusitis, asthma, gum diseases, cough, cold, burns, and skin irritation.
Propagation of Garden Verbena can be done through seeds or stem cuttings. Mature seeds can be collected and sowed in moist soil until they germinate. Stem cuttings from healthy plants can be planted in potting soil.