Charles Day is Wave Hill’s Ruth Rea Howell Horticultural Interpreter.
Ligularia ‘Britt-Marie Crawford’ (leopard plant cultivar) is one of the most handsome plants of the Shade Border, a tree-lined walk in a quiet corner of the garden.
Its dark-maroon foliage keeps its color through the entire summer—unusual for many dark-hued plants—and provides a perfect contrast for the golden-yellow flowers that appear over several weeks in late summer.
This cultivar was named by James Crawford in honor of his wife, Britt-Marie Crawford, following her death. She discovered it growing in a planting of Ligularia dentata ‘Othello’, in Fife, Scotland.
Like most ligularias, it thrives in moist, rich soil in a shady location, and these are exactly the conditions found in this part of the garden. It can be seen at the entrance to the Shade Border, at the end closest to Wave Hill House. You can just see a bit of Wave Hill House in this last shot.