Tansy, Tanacetum vulgare, is a popular garden perennial, and has spread from its native Eurasia areas around the world. Popular as a decorative plant, Tansy is also grown not just for its looks but also as an insect repellent and pot-pourri ingredient.
Tansy is naturally found in many hedgerows throughout Europe, and this is evidence of the ease by which it can be grown in a garden. After all if it can grow happily in the wild with no care and attention, then it can thrive anywhere. We don’t see it as often here, but this beautiful flower is one you’ll want to add your garden.
Tansy can be grown seed, or from propagating via a division of the root system, and the plant can be grown in almost any soil. Tansy though does have a certain preference for moist, yet well-drained soil. Most types of Tansy do best in full sun exposure, although some, especially the variegated forms of the plant do well in light shade. If sowing directly into the ground, simply ensure that all dangers of frost have passed. Of course an earlier start can be achieved by starting seeds off indoors.
When planting tansy though, ensure that each plant has at least 1 foot (or 30cm) gap around them, as the spread of Tansy is about 17 inches (or 45cm) for most varieties. This gap of course is also dependent upon whether the Tansy is being used as a companion plant, for plants with a larger spread. Tansy will also often grow to a height of 3 feet (or around 90cm).
Tansy will require watering when first planted, but after it has started to grow, Tansy will only require additional watering when a drought of rainfall sets in. In some cases the addition of some fertiliser might be required, but again this will only be necessary when the Tansy has been planted in the poorest of soils. Tansy will start to flower towards the end of summer, when the full colour majesty of its yellow buttons will be fully revealed.
The natural insecticide nature of tansy also ensures that it is fairly impervious to harm from insects. Disease is also uncommon; ensuring that once planted Tansy is likely to thrive.
The ease by which Tansy grows though does lead to it being an invasive plant species, and a certain amount of care does need to be taken to ensure that the plant doesn’t spread throughout the garden and perhaps even further a field.
Whilst Tansy might not be too everyone’s liking, the golden flowering can add a dash of color to the garden, and the beneficial nature of the plant’s scent certainly offers added protection to other plants.