Anemones: from classic blue to fire engine red
Peter and Els van Santen’s anemone nursery is situated in the heart of the Westland region. They’ve been growing anemones under glass for 20 years, from classic blue to fire engine red. Peter’s favourite is the white anemone with a black heart (Anemone ‘Marianne Panda’), which is used a lot for funerals and weddings.
Entering the greenhouse early in the morning, you’re surprised by a fresh woodland smell. “There’s tree bark on the soil,” is how Peter explains the pleasant forest fragrance. “It’s home to our biological helpers: useful creatures that help prevent pests and diseases.”
Anemones are grown under ‘cold’ cultivation. “We only use the heating to keep the greenhouse free of frost. In winter the crop grows slowly and steadily: we harvest some anemones, but not a lot. When it becomes lighter and sunnier again – from mid-February – the crop starts to grow explosively. Then spring really does erupt here in the greenhouse.”
Place anemones in a cool spot out of the draught to enjoy them for as long as possible. Anemones are thirsty flowers; keep an eye on the water in the vase and top up when necessary.