Imagine: “These are difficult places to grow plants,” he said. “This path and wall are hot in the summer. There isn’t much root room in this stonewall, and the soil is sandy under the stepping stones on this path. What could possible grow here?” he asked.
“You need a basket of gold,” she replied.
“Why…will the plants that thrive here be expensive?” he said.
“No,” she laughed, “that’s the name of the plant you need. Basket of gold.”
Name: Aurinia saxatilis aka basket of gold
Type of Plant: A perennial plant that thrives in well drained soil in full to part sun.
Why I Love this plant: The foliage is attractive before and after it blooms, the bright yellow flowers are uplifting in the spring when the tulips are also flowering, and it self seeds in places and spaces that other plants won’t grow. What’s not to love?
A Word to the Wise: This is not a plant for a place where the sprinkler or irrigation hits frequently. This is not the plant for well-amended, moist soils. This is not the plant for gardeners who want a perennial that stays in one place for years. This plant is short-lived…about three years or so. But it self-seeds if you don’t deadhead it, and those new plants only appear in places where the plant is happy to grow. You can help the plant along by gathering the seeds when they are golden in color and scattering them by rocks or in gravel in the sun.
If you buy plants, place them at the top of a stonewall or at the top of a rock garden and it will seed in the spaces in the wall and between stones in the garden. Watch for new seedlings in the late-fall or the following spring for these will be your future plants.