Pearly everlasting, related to asters and chrysanthemums, is a ground cover from Asia with slightly fuzzy, narrow, silvery-gray foliage and clusters of white or whitish flowers that resemble daisies. The flowers appear summer to autumn. The flowers are good for cutting and drying for use in garden craft projects.
- Common name: Pearly everlasting
- Botanical name: Anaphalis spp.
- Zones: 3 to 9, depending on species
- Size: Up to 3 feet tall, depending on species
- From: Areas of Asia
- Family: Compositae (daisy family)
- Sun: Full sun
- Soil: Moist, but well-drained soil in full sun.
- Moisture: Water during times of drought. Some species are not as drought tolerant as well as other gray-leafed plants.
- Mulch: Lay a 2- to 3-inch-deep layer of mulch over the soil around the plants. Use winter mulch only after the soil has frozen.
- Pruning: Cut plants back in autumn after freezing temperatures arrive or in spring before plants begin to grow.
- Fertilizer: Fertilizer is generally not necessary in soils that are rich in organic matter. If desired, use a balanced fertilizer in spring.
- Seed: Sow seeds indoors or in the garden in spring.
- Division: Divide anytime the soil isn't frozen. Spring and autumn are best.
- Fungal diseases: If portions of the plant rot or have spotted leaves, the plant may be suffering from fungal disease. To prevent these diseases, try to avoid wetting the plants' foliage, especially after mid-afternoon. It is also helpful to divide plants so that the clumps do not become especially large. This will ensure good airflow, which also discourages these diseases.
- Anaphalis margaritacea: Green foliage with white undersides and yellowish-colored flower heads. Plants grow to 2 feet tall. Zones 4 to 8.
- Anaphalis ‘Summer Snow': Gray-green foliage with white undersides and clear white flower heads. Plants grow to 3 feet tall. Zones 3 to