Polemonium caeruleum


  • Jacob’s Ladder gets its name from the arrangement of its leaves – pairs of opposite leaflets resembling a ladder. In early summer, erect stems rise up from the bright green foliage carrying clusters of bell-shaped, lavender-blue flowers. A cottage-garden favourite, Jacob’s Ladder is happiest in partial shade, and looks equally at home in a wildlife garden setting or in grass.

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This justifiably popular border perennial bears attractive leaves and tall stems of bright blue flowers in spring and early summer.Jacob’s-ladder is a great and very easy going plant. It forms clumps of arching leaves, each of which carries two rows of long, pointed green leaflets. These serried ranks of leaflets give the impression of a ladder, hence the common name. In spring, tall stems clothed with similar leaves arise from the centre of the plant and are topped by a cluster of large and beautiful blue-purple flowers. The flowers are set off perfectly by a central spray of prominent orangey-yellow stamens. Several flowers open at a time and the display continues for weeks as new buds open in succession.This is a tough and reliable garden perennial that’s easily grown in the herbaceous border. It’s long-lived, but does perform better in slightly cooler, lightly shaded spots with soil that doesn’t dry out. Large clumps are easily split in early spring and new plants are readily grown from seed sown in autumn or spring.

  • Position: full sun or partial shade
  • Soil: fertile, moist, well-drained soil
  • Rate of growth: average
  • Flowering period: June
  • Hardiness: Fully hardy
  • Height & spread: 80cm x 30cm
  • Pot size : 9cm