Everything You Need to Know About the Benefits of Anemones
Whether you walk by a blooming anemone plant in the forest or pop a few of them in your garden for cut flowers, it’s hard not to fall in love with these plants. Along with being gorgeous, they’re also quite easy to grow! However, you may not know all the other reasons why you should love these flowers. They can attract beneficial insects, add intrigue to shade gardens, and more! Keep reading to learn about the uses and benefits of anemone flowers.
- Botanical Overview
- About Anemone Flowers
- 11 Uses and Benefits of Anemones
- 1. Anemones Are Native to Numerous Regions
- 2. Anemones Are Perennials
- 3. Some Anemone Species Are Drought Tolerant
- 4. Anemone Plants Can Tolerate Shade and Sun
- 5. Anemone Plants Easy To Grow
- 6. Anemone Bloom in an Array of Colors
- 7. Anemone Attract Bees & Other Pollinators
- 8. Anemones Support Beneficial Insects
- 9. Anemone Flowers Can Be Cut For Floral Displays
- 10. Anemone Plants Are Used in Herbalism and Folk Medicine
- 11. Anemones Contain Useful Compounds
- Anemone Flower FAQs:
- Wrapping Up
|Scientific Name:||Anemone genus|
|Native Range:||Temperate and subtropical regions across the world except for Australia and Antarctica|
|Botanical Characteristics:||Flowers have thin and delicate petals that grow on long, skinny stems that reach about the leaves; most plants are one to two feet tall|
|Flowering Season:||Varies depending on species; spring, summer, or fall|
|Colors:||Flower color can widely vary; colors include white, pink, red, yellow, and purple|
About Anemone Flowers
When grown in the proper zone, anemones are perennial plants that come back year after year.
Since there are many types of anemones, their physical characteristics can vary quite a bit. However, the flowers are known for thin and delicate petals that sit on skinny stems. The flowers also have prominent stamens that are arranged in a tight ring.
The leaves vary depending on the species. They can be simple or compound, and the leaf margins may be smooth or serrated.
Various anemone species are native to regions throughout the world. In fact, anemones are native to every continent except for Australia and Antarctica.
Anemones can be grown in zones 4 through 9, but it’s important that you choose the proper species for your area.
11 Uses and Benefits of Anemones:
1. Anemones Are Native to Numerous Regions
While some types of plants are native to only one region or even one country, anemones are spread throughout the world. There are more than a hundred species of anemones, so you can likely find one that is native to your area.
Anemones are native to many temperate regions, including North America and Europe. In fact, you can find a native anemone species on every continent except for Australia and Antarctica!
One species of anemone that is native to the Eastern United States is the wood anemone (Anemonoides quinquefolia). These plants can be found growing in rich, moist soil in wooded areas. As such, they make an easy addition to many shade gardens.
Native plants are used to growing in a particular area, so they often can grow successfully without much care. This means you don’t have to worry about dry periods or heavy rains.
Furthermore, native plants support other native species, including birds, butterflies, and bees.
2. Anemones Are Perennials
As long as anemones are grown in the proper environment, they are perennials. This means you can plant them once and then enjoy them year after year.
This also means you won’t have to purchase anemones yearly or put in the work it takes to plant them.
While anemones are perennials in their native regions, they can die back if grown in a too cold region. If you’re planting corms of cold-sensitive species, it’s best to dig the corms up each fall and replant them each spring. Alternatively, you can grow the corms in a protected greenhouse or cover the plants with a fabric row cover.
3. Some Anemone Species Are Drought Tolerant
Since there are so many species of anemones, drought tolerance and water needs vary across the genus. With that said, there are some drought-tolerant types of anemones!
Although most anemones will perform best in moist soil, they can survive periods of drought. Two types of anemones that are drought-tolerant are wood anemones and Japanese anemones.
Anemones that are planted in shady areas can often tolerate drought better than those planted in full sun.
4. Anemone Plants Can Tolerate Shade and Sun
With so many different anemone species, you can find plants that thrive in full sun and others that prefer shade. That means you can find an anemone for practically every spot in your garden.
When it comes to shade-loving plants, the wood anemone is a great option. You can plant it in a shade garden or beside taller plants that block the sun. You can even plant these flowers in a pot located on a shady porch or deck.
If you have a garden that receives full or partial sun, you’ll want to look at other types of anemones. Anemone canadensis and Anemone blanda are two species that prefer full or partial sun.
The anemone species that gardeners grow for cut flowers (Anemone coronaria) also prefers full sun. You can enjoy these plants in your garden and also cut the flowers to bring indoors.
5. Anemone Plants Easy To Grow
As long as you select the proper anemone for your environment, these plants are easy to grow and care for.
Some types of anemones are planted from bulbs called corms. These corms are planted in the fall in warmer areas and in the late winter/early spring in colder areas.
Once the corms are in the ground, ensure they don’t experience temperatures below 25ºF. You can cover the corms with a fabric row cover or a low tunnel to protect them.
As long as the corms stay warm enough, they will produce leaves and then flowers in the spring. After the anemone flowers bloom, you can leave the corms in the ground if your winters are warm enough. Or you can dig them up and bring them indoors to protect them from cold temperatures.
Other types of anemones can be transplanted or planted from seed. These varieties typically don’t need to be dug up in the winter.
If you plant an anemone species that is native to your area, you won’t have to protect it from the weather. After you plant it, you can almost forget about it if you don’t fancy deadheading and cutting back at the end season.
6. Anemone Bloom in an Array of Colors
If you’re looking for a wide variety of flower colors, anemones are for you! Not only do the petal colors vary by species and cultivar, but so do the stamens and carpels.
Anemone petal colors include white, red, pink, periwinkle, purple, and yellow. Along with various colors, the petals come in single and double arrangements.
Not only does this diversity of colors make your garden exciting, but it can also help you send a specialized message. Each anemone color has a unique meaning and symbolism.
For example, pink anemones symbolize fun and playfulness, while yellow anemones signify friendship or wealth.
7. Anemone Attract Bees & Other Pollinators
Anemone flowers provide pollen for bees, flies, and other pollinators. This helps support these species and help them produce offspring.
Since different anemone species bloom at different times of the year, anemones can provide food for pollinators for months on end. The key to making this happen is to plant various anemone species.
Some butterflies and moths also lay eggs on anemone plants. When the eggs hatch, the young feed on the anemone foliage. However, since the flowers do not produce much nectar, they do not attract butterflies.
8. Anemones Support Beneficial Insects
Along with attracting pollinators, anemones can help attract other beneficial insects.
Predatory insects like minute pirate bugs and ladybugs can feed on pests such as aphids, thrips, and spider mites. However, these good bugs don’t just eat pests—they also eat pollen.
Since anemones have pollen-rich flowers, they help support these predatory insects. When these insects are out of pests to eat, they are more likely to stick around if they have access to another food source.
Having these predatory insects around means, it’s less likely you’ll need to turn to pesticides to control pest outbreaks.
9. Anemone Flowers Can Be Cut For Floral Displays
While not all types of anemones work well as cut flowers, the ones that do are stunning! Despite their delicate appearance, these anemones can last in a vase for over a week.
Each anemone corm can produce up to 30 flowers. Planting a handful of corms can lead to hundreds of blooms.
Like with many types of flowers, it’s best to cut anemones as soon as the flowers begin to open. This will lead to a long vase life.
If you want to grow anemones for floral displays, it’s important you select the proper species. While some anemone flowers hold up well in a vase, others quickly wilt or wither.
The poppy anemone (Anemone coronaria) is one of the best anemone species to grow for cut flowers. Due to plant breeding efforts, you can find these flowers in various colors.
10. Anemone Plants Are Used in Herbalism and Folk Medicine
Although anemone plants are toxic, herbalists have been using anemones for years to treat a variety of symptoms. The leaves and flowers can be used to make a tincture that can then be used in very low doses.
Herbalists suggest that anemone plants can be used to help with anxiety and frazzled feelings. Tinctures may also help with migraines, insomnia, and other issues.
The plants have been used in China to treat various conditions. These include arthritis, skin infection, epilepsy, and dysentery.
11. Anemones Contain Useful Compounds
Research has shown that anemone plants contain a wide variety of compounds. These include saponins and various essential oil compounds.
While saponins are toxic compounds that can cause harm if eaten in large doses, they can also have beneficial properties. One study showed that saponins derived from anemone plants can be toxic to certain types of cancer cells.
Anemones also contain compounds that have antioxidant, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties. While people have been using these compounds to treat conditions for years, more research needs to occur before these compounds enter mainstream medicine.
Anemone Flower FAQs:
What is the most common Anemone flower color?
Pink is the most common color, followed by white, for the Anemone flower.
What does the Anemone flower symbolize?
It is a symbol of lost love and mourning in some myths and of good luck in others.
What month do Anemone flowers bloom?
Anemones can bloom in the spring, summer, or fall, depending on the variety and species. Depending on the area you live in, they may bloom as early as March and as late as October. For maximum blooming, it’s worth fertilizing your anemones in spring and early summer.
Are Anemones good luck?
They’re considered a good luck symbol across both Europe and Asia.
How long do Anemone flowers last in a vase?
Certain types of Anemone can last for a week or longer in a vase filled with fresh water daily.
Not only do anemone plants provide you with beautiful flowers, but they can also offer other benefits. Since there are so many different species and cultivars of anemones, it’s important to remember that each anemone may offer unique benefits.
Briana holds a B.S. in Plant Sciences from Penn State University. She manages a small market garden where she grows vegetables and herbs. She also enjoys growing flowers and houseplants at home.