Gardening Magazine

Potentilla Fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’

By Davis Landscape Architecture @DavisLandArch

Potentilla fruticosa 'Abbotswood' (22/05/2016, Kew Gardens, London)

Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ (22/05/2016, Kew Gardens, London)

Position: Full sun

Soil: Moist, well drained

Flowering period: Spring and summer

Eventual Height: 75cm

Eventual Spread: 1.2m

Hardiness: 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a

Family: Rosaceae

Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ is a deciduous shrub with a bushy habit. Its dark green pubescent leaves are pinnate with entire margins, usually composed of five leaflets. Its white flowers are saucer shaped, up to 4cm across and appear terminally. Its fruit is an achene.

Potentilla fruticosa 'Abbotswood' Flower (22/05/2016, Kew Gardens, London)

Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ Flower (22/05/2016, Kew Gardens, London)

The species, Potentilla fruticosa, commonly known as the Shrubby Cinquefoil, is native to temperate regions in Asia and most of Europe including the UK. Potentilla fruticosa is synonymous with Dasiphora fruticosa.

The etymological root of the binomial name Potentilla is derived from the Latin potens meaning ‘potent’. Fruticosa is from the Latin meaning ‘bushy’.

The landscape architect may find Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ useful as a free flowering, low growing shrub. It may be used as an informal hedge and may be specified when dealing with troublesome, hard to maintain areas such as slopes and banks. It is tolerant of maritime regions and once established is drought tolerant.

Potentilla fruticosa 'Abbotswood' Leaf (22/05/2016, Kew Gardens, London)

Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ Leaf (22/05/2016, Kew Gardens, London)

Ecologically,  Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ flowers are attractive to pollinating insects, including bees and butterflies.

The royal horticultural society has given Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ their prestigious Award of Garden Merit in 1993.

Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ prefers moist, fertile, well-drained soils. It tolerates most pH of soil.

Potentilla fruticosa ‘Abbotswood’ requires little to no maintenance. Necessary pruning should be carried out from mid to late spring.

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