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A picture of a Garden Anchusa

Garden Anchusa

Anchusa azurea

Also known as

Ltalian Borage, Italian Alkanet, Sea Borage, Italian Bugloss, Large Blue Alkanet, Italian Anchusa, Alkanet

Full Sun
Moderate care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








3 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images of Garden Anchusa

A close up of a some blue Anchusa azurea flowers
A close up of a some blue Anchusa azurea flowers
Some blue Anchusa azurea flowers growing in the wild
A close up of the green stem and leaves of a Anchusa azurea plant
A photo of Garden Anchusa

Garden Anchusa Overview

Anchusa azurea is a herbaceous perennial cultivar in the borage family, Boraginaceae. It typically grows to around 90cm in height, producing sturdy, branching stems of blue flowers in early summer. The flowers develop to a darker blue-purple shade with age. Commonly by the names ltalian borage, Italian alkanet and garden Anchusa, this attractive plant makes a striking and long-lasting statement in a sunny border. Foliage is textured and covered in coarse hairs, leaves are produced mainly at the base and these are lance-shaped. This species is part of the Royal Horticultural Society “Plants for Pollinators” initiative to showcase plants which support pollinator populations by providing ample amounts of nectar and/ or pollen. A great choice for encouraging pollinating insect wildlife into your garden!

Common problems with Garden Anchusa

Can also suffer from leaf mining saw flies

How to harvest Garden Anchusa

Generally not harvested.

How to propagate Garden Anchusa



Can be taken from either root or softwood.

Special features of Garden Anchusa

Attracts bees

Attracts useful insects

Attractive flowers

Other uses of Garden Anchusa

This perennial is perfect for wildlife friendly gardens in free draining beds or borders. It suits a variety of gardening styles but in particular cottage gardens.