Leaves: with oval, pointed leaves. Leaves can be solid green, of varying intensities or variegated with spots or splashes of white.
Flowers: The small funnel shaped flowers come in vivid clear shades of white, blue and pink. Many will change color, as they mature and are pollinated.
Common Name(s:) Lungwort
You can also plant them in a sunny border, among later maturing perennials, for a shot of spring color. Pulmonaria can handle full sun in the spring and the leaves of taller, summer perennials will provide shade for them, later in the season..
For a winning combination, they look especially beautiful planted with the delicate foliage and soft pink flowers of fringed leaf Dicentra.
P. officinalis 'Sissinghurst White' - Long, speckled leaves with pale pink buds that open to pure white
P. 'Spilled Milk' - Has the familiar pink to blue flowers. Young leaves are tinged purple, changing to film of white as they age.
Pulmonaria is a low growing plant, although the flower stalks can reach a foot and a half. Bees love the blossoms. Most varieties will self seed as well as spread by rhizomes, so they make a nice choice as a ground cover.
Pulmonaria are basically a woodland plant and prefer either shady location or at least a moist one.
Maintenance: After flowering, the flower stalks turn brown and flop over. The initial leaves also begin looking tattered. A removing the entire flower stalk and the older leaves will encourage the plant to rejuvenate and look fresh again. More de-leafing may be necessary if the summer is hot or dry.
Because they grow in moist conditions and low to the ground, Pulmonaria can be prone to mildew and slug and snail damage.
More on adding blue flowers to your garden.