Post image for Roman Shield

Roman Shield

by Andrew Keys on February 10, 2012

Photo: www.robsplants.com

I don’t ever want to give you the impression I think I know all the plants–I soooooooo don’t know all the plants. I do, however, shop for plants a lot. It is one of my default free-time-with-laptop activities. So I’m pretty aware of what’s on the market, past and present. Given that, I get really, really excited when I find that “new plant”–the one that A) I’ve never heard of, and B) looks really exciting. It’s even more exciting when I realize this isn’t something that’s just been introduced. It was there all along, right under my nose!

Such is the case of Roman shield (Fibigia clypeata), a very cool plant with a great common name I’d never heard of and stumbled onto on Dancing Oaks’ site. Yep, it’s sold out and there’s no photo, which should be a clue to you as to my curiosity.

Look at those shields! It’s a silvery cruciferous plant that blooms yellow, but then the real show starts in its second year with these little seedheads, according to the prolific Rob’s Plants. I’m a nut for silver, and I read elsewhere that it’s short-lived but seeds around, so I figured I could find the seed elsewhere. I did, at J.L. Hudson. I guess this is going to be my seed experiment of the year (I suck at seed), and if nothing else, I’ll keep an eye out for plants for sale elsewhere.

Hardiness: Zones 5-9
Best features: Silver seed pods; yellow flowers, silver foliage
Likes: Sun and good drainage
Comes from: Southern Europe

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