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St. John’s Wort

Another lovely shrub in our garden is the semi-evergreen Sunburst St. John’s Wort and their bright yellow May bumblebee flowers.  It is  still looking nice with about half its foliage still out. Because of the flower’s bright yellow-gold colors, it was once believed to have some sort of enchanted link with the  sun. It is not hard to see why, considering every flower appears to be an individual burst of sunshine. Each radiant flower seems to bloom more lovely than the last. Bright orange and yellow stamen sprout from the center of the blooming beauty.  After the flowers fade, the seed head is showy as well.

The Hypericum frondosum ‘Sunburst’ shrub in my garden is pruned 2-3 feet tall to keep it honest and well-behaved. St. John’s Wort is also known to be resistant to deer, making it a good substitute for deer grazed and  lost azaleas. It is not particular to any soil requirements and will grow in the sun to part shade  and can survive without irrigation. The plant prefers a mild climate, where its emerald-bluish colored foliage can remain evergreen. With those brilliant yellow flowers in combination with its splendid leaves, St. John’s Wort is a treasure in the garden.

Even more attractive then their appearance, St. John’s Wort is known to have medicinal properties. Extracts from the plant have been known to heal conditions ranging from muscle pain and skin burns to minor and major depression. Rob Proctor states in his book Perennials that it can even be helpful with conditions such as ADHD and Parkinson’s disease. Perhaps this sunshine flower is magical after all.