Aethionema grandiflorum Boiss. & Hohen.
Aethionema grandiflorum, commonly known as Persian Stone Cress, is a compact subshrub that is very well suited for rockeries.
Aethionema grandiflorum was described in 1849 by Pierre Edmond Boissier and Rudolph Friedrich Hohenacker. The name is considered as validly published.
The plants grow to a height of 20 to 30 centimetres and approximately 30 to 45 centimetres wide. They are rather short-lived but self-seed freely.
Aethionema grandiflorum is an evergreen plant with simple alternate leaves. They are bluish to grey-green and linear with entire margins.
Flowers and Fruit
The pink, cross-shaped flowers are arranged in racemes. The plants bloom from June to July.
The fruits are silicles.
Aethionema grandiflorum is native to Turkey, north Iraq, the Caucasus and Iran.
The subshrubs prefer a sunny situation on moderately moist soil. The substrate should be gritty loam with a pH between 8 and 10. They tolerate temperatures down to -23Â°C (USDA zone 6). Winter wetness is not well tolerated.
Classification after Prof. Dr. Sieber
The ornamental value of Aethionema grandiflorum lies especially in its fragrance. The subshrubs can be used in rockeries and dry walls, cottage gardens, as a groundcover, in the foreground of beds and borders as well as in troughs. They also provide pasture for bees. They plants are best planted solitary or in small groups of three to five specimens, the planting distance is approx. 20 to 30 centimetres. Good companions are e.g. Iberis saxatilis, Arabis alpina subsp. caucasica or Dianthus deltoides.
Maintenance and Propagation
The plants need little to no maintenance if grown under suitable conditions. Prune back lightly after flowering to promote compact growth. Also prune back if self-seeding is not wanted. Winter protection is advisable.
Propagate by seeds or softwood cuttings in spring.
Pests and Diseases
Honeydew, galls and distorted leaves are a sign for an infestation with aphids. Use an insecticide or control biologically , e.g. with parasitic wasps or predators such as Aphidoletes aphidimyza.
Fine webs on the plants indicate an infestation with red spider mites. These sap-sucking insects mainly appear under glass and can be controlled either with insecticide or biologically with parasitic mites.
- Walter Erhardt, Erich GÃ¶tz, Nils BÃ¶deker, Siegmund Seybold: Der groÃe Zander. Eugen Ulmer KG, Stuttgart 2008, ISBN 978-3-8001-5406-7. (Ger.)
- Christoper Brickell (Editor-in-chief): RHS A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants. Third edition. Dorling Kindersley, London 2003, ISBN 0-7513-3738-2.