A fairly new, and some would say indispensable, addition to the garden is Gaura ‘Siskiyou Pink.’ A native of Texas, the original white-flowered plant was first discovered by German collector F.J. Lindheimer in the late 19th century.
Some years later the pink variety was discovered in the display gardens of the Siskiyou Nursery in Medford, Oregon.
Gaura is Latin for ‘superb’ – and the plant really is superb. It bears masses of pink flowers on many green stems which often reach 120 centimetres in height. It is particularly suitable for gardens in this region, especially for those which do not require a great deal of water. The plant has a long taproot which enables it to withstand long periods of drought.
It is of course a wild flower and looks extremely attractive when surrounded by a gravel mulch. The grey of the stone contrasts with the green foliage and pink flowers, making a lovely feature in any garden.
There is doubt as to its being winter hardy, so a good precaution is to give it a warm winter overcoat of mulch to protect it from the worst of the winter winds and frosts. You will find it in most of your local nurseries – give it a try. Even the most cursory attention will be rewarded with long-lasting blooms from early spring to late summer.
If you do decide to shear it back in midsummer, it will produce another crop of leaves and flowers later in the season, although these may not be quite as tall as the first growth of the season.