Stunning Sun Rose


Reaching a height of about 40 centimetres and spreading up to 80 centimetres wide, the Sun Rose (Helianthemum ‘Fire Dragon’) forms a tight mound of compact, evergreen, grey-green foliage that makes an effective, ornamental groundcover.  

During the warmer months of the year, the plant is smothered in masses of stunning, orange-red flowers.

This hardy perennial grows well in a sunny spot in most soil types that are moist but well-draining. 
Grouped together, they look great in mixed garden borders where suitable companions could be plantings of Day Lily (Hemerocallis ‘Cranberry Baby’) and Pinks (Dianthus ‘Memories’).  

With its compact form and striking flowers, the easy-care Sun Rose is the ideal plant for decorative pots, adding its own unique charm and appeal to balconies and courtyards.

To encourage a dense, neat form and stimulate further blooms, simply lightly prune the plant after the main flowering period in spring and apply some slow-release fertiliser.  

Top gardening tips for January 

  • Plant herbs, lettuce, radish and silver beet in full sun. Feed vegetables fortnightly with a liquid fertiliser. Tip-prune herbs to keep them in shape and use the prunings in your cooking.
  • Keep potted plants and hanging baskets well-watered. Move them into a cool spot when there’s a hot, dry wind and add hydrated water-storage crystals to the potting mix. Spray a film of Yates ‘Droughtshield’ over tender plants to protect them from sunburn and during heatwaves. 
  • Water plants well on hot days. To retain soil moisture, top up mulch on all garden beds to a depth of five centimetres, keeping it slightly away from plant stems.
  • Wear a dust mask when using potting mix to avoid inhaling any particles and wear suitable gloves. Always buy products that comply with the Australian standards and wash your hands thoroughly after gardening. 
  • Happy New Year and good gardening in 2019!  


Judith Sleijpen

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