Miss Willmott is a variety of Scabiosa Caucasica, producing beautiful large white flowers with a distinctively ruffled appearance which float on long wiry stems all summer long and will attract butterflies to your garden. Feathery foliage is an attractive feature, too. What the cottage garden is all about. Likes full sun. Any well drained soil. 18 to 24 in. 1 litre pot.
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Scabiosa Miss Willmott is an easy plant and relatively unfussy, objecting only to heavy wet conditions, and coping with poor stony soils and dry places, which is not a great surprise, given its native habitat of the Caucasus, northern Turkey and Iran. Scabiosa as a genus is fairly widespread, counting Europe, Africa, Asia and Japan among its various homes.
Ellen Willmott, after whom this variety of scabious is named, was a plantswoman and gardener who had a famous garden at Warley Place in Essex in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She is now largely forgotten, and her garden long lost to cultivation, but her contemporary Gertrude Jekyll describes her as 'the greatest of all living woman gardeners'. However, her name - and that of her garden - live on in the multitude of plant varieties (around 50 to 60 in all) named in her, or its, honour, the best known of which is probably the famous Eryngium Miss Willmott's Ghost. But that, as they say, is another story. You can read more about this important lady of horticulture here.
Scabiosa Caucasica Miss Willmott is a hardy perennial with feathery grey green leaves and ruffled white flowers from mid to late summer suitable for full sun.