This beautiful plant has been an integral part of the small garden of the Carmen San Matías for over 50 years. In the Alhambra, Lychnis coronaria (L.) Desr. is known by the name of colilurdes; this name may come from the Spanish word “col” (cabbage) as its silver-grey foliage resembles that of a cabbage. This species is native to Southern Europe, but we do not know when it started to be cultivated as an ornamental plant. Its abundant bright pink or fuschia flowers, which bloom between the months of May and July, will not have gone unnoticed to the expert eyes of gardeners of other eras.
At present, cultivation of the Rose Campion is based on its natural strategy as a species: self-seeding. The gardeners collect its seeds in July, and sow them in our seedbeds in September so that they are ready in the following spring.