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Onosma echioides

Golden Drops

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Item #: 9395

Zones: 7a to 8b, guessing

Dormancy: Evergreen

Height: 15" tall

Culture: Sun

Origin: Southern Europe

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)

I first encountered Onosma echioides on our 2010 Crete expedition, where it grew in dry limestone rock cracks, and immediately fell in love...darn near lost my horticultural virginity if the truth be known. This odd member of the borage family, that includes pulmonaria and brunnera, makes a clump of evergreen rosettes that spread out to 30" wide in early spring and are topped, starting in April (NC), with branched stalks, each bearing dozens of pendent, light yellow flowers. For us, flowering continues until June and sporadically afterwards through the summer. In the garden, Onosma echioides has proven quite easy to grow as long as the soil drainage is good...especially in winter. The bristly nature of the leaves can prove an irritant to those with sensitive skin, which thankfully doesn't include yours truly. Medicinally, the leaves are used to make kids puke, the flowers are used to treat heart palpitations and rheumatism, and the roots are used externally to treat skin contusions...damn!