Tried and True: Ligularia reniformis

  • img_6451* Impressive in size and lush appearance.
    * Evergreen.
    * Looks tropical but can withstand light frost and cool winters.
    * Widely available for sale.

 In this country, as in Australia, we all know this plant as the tractor seat ligularia, which says quite a bit about our rural origins. I guess the leaves could be said to resemble a traditional tractor seat in shape and when growing strongly, getting pretty close in size. We have almost made this plant our own in New Zealand and have certainly pushed the boundaries of where it is grown – it is technically sub tropical and from East Asia. In warm areas, it gets considerably larger but even in cooler areas with a bit of frost, it makes an impressive clump a metre across and a metre high over time. It will need more protected conditions where frosts are more frequent but it is happy in high shade and on woodland margins. Typical of any perennial, it likes rich, well cultivated soil with plenty of humus and good moisture levels. While not immune to the munching ways of slugs and snails, it is nowhere near as tasty as hostas and we have never worried about pests or diseases on our plants. It is grown for its foliage and if you have the space for a large and impressive plant with large and impressive leaves (think giant water lily pads), it is a good addition and easy to contrast with a whole range of other plants. Reniformis is widely available in garden centres.

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7 thoughts on “Tried and True: Ligularia reniformis

  1. sophie dungate

    I am struggling to determine if this plant has been reclassified as a Farfugium, as have some other Ligularias. Can anyone help?

    1. Abbie Jury Post author

      As far as I know, reniformis is still a ligularia and has not been reclassified as a farfugium though it seems to sit happily alongside some of those that have been moved. If you are really keen, Google will locate the reasons why some have been reclassified but I was not inclined to wade through the scientific data. Certainly, at this stage, reniformis seems to still be referred to as a ligularia on the more reputable websites.

  2. Ina

    You say “Widely available for sale.” Could you possibly name some suppliers. I live in Durban, South Africa

    1. Abbie Jury Post author

      You do realise I am in New Zealand? I am sorry, I do not even know who sells plants in Durban, let alone who sells this cultivar. All I can tell you is that every single garden centre worth their salt in this country will either have this plant in stock or be able to get it for you.

  3. Craig B Post author

    We moved to a house with a large woodland garden where this plant (or a close variety thereof) had run riot. 2 years later we are still attempting to get it under control as it grows thru almost everything. I rank it with agapanthus. Nice enough under control but one to be wary of. (My wife calls it ‘evil bastard’. Nuff said.)

  4. Val

    Hi, we grow Ligularia reniformis in our private nursery and I am wanting to know what the large black spots are that are stating to appear on the leaves? Help greatly appreciated :)

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