Tall and imposing, this wildflower has become gentrified. Many hybrid forms have been selected with large saucer-shaped flowers and showy stamens. Some have soft woolly leaves. Small sorts do well in rock gardens and troughs, but taller varieties show off well in perennial or mixed borders, and among shrub plantings. They tolerate most soils well, but not wet feet. Cut back after the first flush of bloom for later spikes to develop.
Type: Herb, Perennial
Height: Under 6 inches to 8 feet
Width: 6 inches-2 feet wide, depending on variety
Flower color: Blue, Pink, White
Foliage color: Chartreuse/Gold, Gray/Silver
Seasonal features: Spring bloom, Summer bloom, Winter interest
Problem solvers: Drought tolerant
Special features: Attracts birds, Cut flowers, Good for containers, Low maintenance
How to Grow Mullein in Gardens
Learning how to grow mullein is easy; just watch it grow once it has sprouted, if you have the common type. Varieties of mullein, or velvet plants, in gardens need a little more care.
Mullein plants of the common variety can grow as tall at 10 feet when flowering. Once you’ve planted mullein in gardens, expect to spend time removing fuzzy rosettes if you don’t want it to spread. Remove the flower stalk before seeds have dispersed to avoid abundant spread. Hybrid types of mullein in the garden are not as invasive as the common type.
Grouped together and called ornamental mullein, hybrid varieties are more suitable when growing mullein in gardens. Flower in colors of white, pink, lavender and yellow compliment the sunny garden. Wand mullein is another option for the sunny flower bed. Ornamental mullein uses include any area with good drainage and full sun. Flower stalks are striking when in bloom.
Allow plenty of space for plants to develop, although new cultivars reach only 5 feet, with some bred to be only 18 inches in height. Most hybrids are biennials or short lived perennials.
Now that you’ve learned what is mullein, you can make an informed decision before growing it or letting it stay in your landscape.