Pink Fountain gaura offers incredible texture and
beauty with dozens of butterfly-like blossoms that
seem to dance around the plant all season long.
the warm growing season has struggled to get
established, the Pink Fountain gaura has been blooming
with aplomb. The plant is so beautiful, it commands
speaking it is known as Gaura lindheimeri and is in the
family Onagraceae, meaning it is related to evening
primrose and fuchsia. However, the look and texture of
the gaura is not even close to these family members. It
is native to Louisiana and Texas but is a cold-hardy
perennial to zone 5. You can hardly beat that for a
drought tolerant gorgeous perennial.
official common name is Lindheimer’s beeblossom, which
I can certainly accept. Some of the other names, like
butterfly gaura, that reference the flowers’
resemblance to butterflies floating around in mid-air,
and Indian feather, show this plant certainly offers an
interesting texture for the garden.
a lot of gaura varieties have been introduced in the
last decade, it is still a new plant to many gardeners.
I suspect some of the reluctance in planting it may come
from not knowing how to use it, coupled with the fact
that it does have an arching-loose habit, which is a
challenge for those who like control.
reaches reach 2½ to 4 feet in height and forms a long
taproot allowing it to become very drought tolerant. It
performs best in well-drained soil with full sun. You
will be happy to know that this is one plant that does
not need large quantities of organic matter or frequent
applications of fertilizer to put on a good performance.
Do however apply a good layer of mulch, especially in
the colder zones.
gaura tolerates heat and humidity, and puts on a great
fall display if you cut it back in mid-summer, which
normally coincides with a little lull in blooming.
Though gaura is a perennial, a dividing regimen is
really not required. You may find you get a little
reseeding, so just pluck the ones you do not want and
transplant the others.
they are not the showiest flowers in the garden, they
still are ideal companion plants in the perennial border
or for a cottage look. By combining in close plantings
with other perennials like rudbeckias, coreopsis, and
blue salvias, you can create some wonderful if not
have several varieties at the Columbus Botanical Garden,
and Pink Fountain is my favorite. Perky Pink, Ballerina
Blush, Ballerina Rose and the award winning Karalee
Petite Pink are also choice selections to try. The fact
that these new varieties are coming out is a testimony
to the toughness of the plants, coupled with their
landscape uses are limited only by your imagination. Use
the open airy habit to your advantage. I have seen
beautiful plantings among rocks, and they also are also
excellent as the center plant in large, mixed
this the year you try gaura. I promise you will not only
get hooked, but you will ask yourself, "Why did I
not try them before?"