swordleaf inula inula ensifoliaIf you have clay soil, you might want to try growing swordleaf inula. The mounds of small swordlike leaves are almost covered with 1-in.-diameter golden-yellow flowers in midsummer.
It’s easy to start from seed indoors. Sow the seed, barely covering them with potting mix, and keep them moist with the temperature between 65 and 70 degrees. Seedlings will sprout in about three weeks. Move the new plants to your garden after the threat of frost has passed.
Plant swordleaf inula near the front of your border or bed and with the crown at least an inch or two above the ground. You need to keep the crown from getting too wet and rotting, especially in the winter.
TYPE Perennial SIZE 2 ft. tall and 1½ ft. wide BLOOM Mid- to late summer LIGHT Full sun SOIL Moist PESTS Powdery mildew if allowed to dry out too frequently HARDINESS Cold: USDA zones 4 to 9; Heat: AHS zones 9 to 1