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Kirengeshoma palmata - Growing Guide
Growing Kirengeshoma palmata
Japanese wax flower
K. palmata are high up our popularity list for herbaceous perennials with good reason. These are tall growing (2-4ft) clump forming perennials with attractive pale yellow flowers in late summer or early autumn when so much else in the garden is already over. These are shade loving plants which thrive in damper dark corners of the garden in which other herbaceous plants might struggle to flower as they should.
The plant is rhizomatous and its rhizomes will spread to colonise and form freestanding clumps in the woodland garden as well as the shady herbaceous border. It is debatable if Kirengeshoma need plant supports when they are in full flower and this rather depends on their location. When in full flower the odd stem bending forward can actually produce a better floral display.
K. palmata has reddish-purple stems and ovate lobed light green leaves of 4-8in in length. Towards the flowering tips of each stem the leaves become unlobed and much smaller. The flowers appear in nodding terminal clusters of three tubular flowers. The fleshy petals overlap at the base.
K. palmata is most easily propagated by gentle division of the delicate young rhizomes as they come into growth in the spring. The plants are fully hardy but benefit from a seasonal mulch and from careful preparation of the chosen planting place with leaf mould and compost.