July 17, 2019
By: Lise Lorimer,
Mass Hort Garden Educator
Eryngium X zabelii – ‘Big Blue’ – is a hybridized sea holly whose thistle-like flowers, bracts, and stems mature to a brilliant blue.
They are clump forming perennials that prefer full sun and dry conditions. They have long taproots and resent being transplanted so are best left alone once established.
The blue to violet shades make stunning additions to cut flower bouquets and will add unique structure in the vase or in the garden bed.
You will also see them favored by most any kind of bee.
This plant is also crucial for many butterflies and will attract a myriad of species. The flowers provide a high nectar reward to its pollinating visitors and the leaves are a specific food source for monarch butterflies.