Guest Author - Hellie T.
Sweet Rocket or Hesperis matronalis
This lovely scented plant is said to have been brought to England in the sixteenth century . It is a traditional cottage garden plant.
I always like to grow a large clump near my back door so when I open the door in the evening I get a waft of their delicious scent.
Sweet Rocketís other names are - Dame's Violet, Damask Violet or Damask Flower, Dame's Rocket, Eveweed, Garden Rocket or I think my favourite - Mother-of-the-evening.
Sweet Rocket is really good value in the garden as it will flower from May until late August.
The flowers are large spikes of pastel lilac, rose or purple flowers Ė these have a lovely strong spicy scent - so plant some near the house or sitting area so you can enjoy it.
For more info on pastel flowered plants for an English Garden - click here
Plant a big clump of them for maximium effect.
Butterflies love this plant and in the evening the scented flowers will attract moths to your garden.
Sweet Rocket is a hardy perennial (zones 3 to 9) and flowers the year after sowing.
Grow in a sunny or partly shaded position and it will reach a height of 2 - 3 ft (60 - 92 cm).
Prefers good rich soil and young plants will need watering to keep their roots moist.
It will self-seed freely so it is best to deadhead if you donít want seedlings next year. Actually cutting off the flowering spikes will encourage it to produce new stems if you are lucky.
Grow it in the border or dotted in big clumps around the garden - it goes well with taller roses or geraniums planted in front of it.
Sweet Rocket lasts well in water
The dried flowers can be added to pot pourri.
For a recipe for an English garden pot-pourri just click here
Enjoy your garden