AVAILABLE SPRING 2020. A fairly recent introduction, one of a geum series named after cocktail drinks, Mai Tai forms a mounding evergreen clump of slightly hairy serrated leaves. From early summer onwards wiry burgundy red stems bear semi-double flowers, all ruffles and frills, in a lovely shade of apricot with hints of pink. Amazing. Sun or semi-shade. Any reasonable soil. 18 in. 1 litre pot.

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The Mai Tai cocktail was originally created as a way to showcase the flavours of rum, and actual recipes seem to vary in respect of the other ingredients. Indeed, two people claim to have created it: Victor Bergeron of the restaurant chain Trader Vic’s and Don the Beachcomber, founder of the Tiki restaurant chain. The first person to taste one (and who lays claim to that could be equally confusing) is supposed to have described it as ‘mai tai’, which means ‘the best’ in Tahitian. For more trivia, try this: the Mai Tai cocktail is featured in Elvis’s film Blue Hawaii. Enough already, as they say.

Growing geums is a fairly straightforward affair. Provide a bright or semi-shaded position and soil that never dries out completely and they will reward you with prolific blooming. Dead head as necessary in the usual way and take out old damaged leaves in early spring to refresh the evergreen cluimp of foliage. And that’s about it.

This short video features a mass of Geum Mai Tai plants in full blooming splendour.

Geum Mai Tai is a compact evergreen hardy perennial with serrated leaves and semi-double apricot and pink flowers all summer suitable for sun or semi-shade.

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