Achillea 'Walther Funcke'
Common Name: yarrow
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Zone: 3 to 8
Height: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: May to July
Bloom Description: Brick red
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Leaf: Fragrant
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Dry Soil

Culture

Best grown in lean, dry to medium moisture, well-drained sandy loams in full sun. Does well in average garden soils and tolerates poor soils as long as drainage is good. Avoid heavy clays and moist, rich, fertile soils. Plants are best sited in locations protected from strong winds. Deadhead spent flower heads to lateral buds to promote additional bloom. Cut plants back to basal leaves after flowering to tidy the planting and to encourage new foliage growth and a possible additional fall bloom. Divide clumps as needed (every 3-4 years) to reinvigorate plantings.

The compact stems of ‘Walther Funcke’ do not tend to flop as much as is the case with many of the taller Achillea varieties.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Achille is a genus of about 85 species of mostly herbaceous perennial from the Northern Hemisphere. Several hybrids are available.

Genus name is in reference to Achilles, hero of the Trojan Wars in Greek mythology, who used the plant medicinally to stop bleeding and to heal the wounds of his soldiers.

‘Walther Funcke’ is a rhizomatous, spreading, upright yarrow cultivar that is noted for its brick-red flowers, gray-green foliage and compact size. It features deeply-dissected, fern-like, aromatic, gray-green leaves and tiny, long-lasting, brick-red flowers with contrasting yellow centers. Flowers appear in dense, flattened, compound corymbs (to 2-4” across) from early to midsummer on stems typically rising to 15-24” tall. Limited reblooming in early fall may occur. This plant is similar in appearance to A. ‘Feuerland’ FIRELAND, and is sometimes described as an improvement thereon because its shorter stems are lest apt to lodge and its brick-red flower color is retained longer as the flowers age. ‘Walther Funcke’ and ‘Feuerland’ were both introduced by Ernst Pagels of Germany.

Problems

Botrytis, stem rot, powdery mildew and rust are occasional disease problems. Taller plants may need staking, particularly if grown in less than full sun. Strong summer rain storms with high winds can flatten exposed plantings. Does poorly in wet sites or in heavy, poorly drained soil.

Garden Uses

Specimen, group or mass. Borders. Cottage gardens, wild gardens, naturalized areas or meadows.