Just wondered if anyone had grown the above plant and could give me any pointers please?
I've read they grow best next to streams and bogs and like the shade.
They get very large as they mature if they like their situation and make bold, dramatic plants. They like their soil to be damp and can grow in full sun if it's moist enough for them not to dry out at the roots.
They are not very frost hardy so for the first few years it's often a good idea to grow them in pots, increasing the size as they grow and then take them into shelter for winter. After that, you can plant them out and then protect the crown in winter by covering it with some of its old leaves folded over and then a pile of garden compost to keep the frosts at bay.
The leaves grow largest in shade and next to water. Mine grow in clay loam next to a large Ligularia in semi shade and I need to water in the summer. I feed them to get the foliage as large as possible but do not over do it. As Obelixx has said just cover the crown with some of the large leaves and that keeps it dry - it is hardier when dry. That easy to be honest.
Pest wise I find Slugs do not touch it (unlike the Ligularia and Rodgersia nearby) but caterpillars do, so watch out for them.
we have had ours in the garden planted by a pond we just dug a hole put some pond liner in it to make a bog style area. Ours has been there for 10 years all we do is cut it right back even the cones that grow in the middle and it grows back every year with huge leaves. we protect it in any way.
I have had two of these freeze to death so my third and last attempt is in a pot which has been plunged in the greenhouse bed. This mild winter means it already has new shoots. I shall give it a bigger pot this spring and keep it on the terrace and it will go back in teh greenhouse next winter and every winter until the pot is too big to move and it's time to see if it's big enough for life out in the beds next to the pond.
I used to get the others through winter by burying them under a 3' high heap of garden compost but twice I was caught out by early, unforecast frosts down to -8C and that did for them. This one will get buried at the beginning of October just in case.
Heres some info for you Chris:
Thanks, we'll see how I get on this year with it.
Plantaholic please read my post on Newbie thread.