Virtues: Siberian bugloss (Brunnera macrophylla) is loved for its textural, variegated leaves that can add color and interest to shade gardens. These two new cultivars, 'Sea Heart' (bottom image) and 'Silver Heart' (top image) offer improved heat and humidity tolerance. While some buglosses seem to melt in hot weather, these thick-leaved brunnera selections hold up better.
Common name: 'Sea Heart' and 'Silver Heart' Siberian bugloss or Siberian forget-me-not
Botanical name:Brunnera macrophylla 'Sea Heart', B. m. 'Silver Heart'
Flowers: Clusters of tiny flowers open in mid-spring. 'Sea Heart' has pink buds that open to blue flowers. 'Silver Heart' has blue flowers from bluish buds.
Foliage: The leaves are thicker and more substantial than those of older cultivars, helping the plant to last through the summer heat. 'Sea Heart': Silvered pale green leaves with thick, dark green veins. 'Silver Heart': Very silver leaves with more delicate, light green veining.
Habit: Mounding herbaceous perennials growing 6 to 12 inches tall and 24 inches wide.
Season: Spring for flowers; spring to fall for foliage.
How to grow 'Sea Heart' and 'Silver Heart' buglosses: Siberian buglosses prefer cool temperatures and light shade. They can take some sun in cooler northern climates, but require shade in the South. These varieties are notable for their resistance to heat and humidity. Provide water in dry times. They need good drainage. USDA Zones 4–8a.
Images courtesy of Plants Nouveau