This parahebe and its cultivars is one of the most cultivated parahebes worldwide. It is a fabulous plant which keeps on giving in a number of ways. It is a great NZ native plant.
It flowers very well producing masses of white flowers from early summer until late autumn in racemes from a number of leaf nodes near the top of each stem. Each raceme has many individual flowers which open slowly in succession. Each flower is white with an ocular ring of mauve and radiating lines of mauve through the petals.
It can be easily pruned hard back to almost ground level and will come away again without difficulty to provide another lovely display.
It makes an excellent plant for the front of a border, in a rock garden or other similar place. As it grows naturally in cool, moist, alongside streams or on damp rocks in shady places it prefers not to receive full sun. The specific name catarractae means of waterfalls in reference to its native habitat in New Zealand.
It is easily propagated by cuttings at any time of the year.
Two distinct cultivars are offered in New Zealand
Parahebe catarractae ‘Delight’ highly coloured heliotrope flowers, with darker lines radiating out form a central ocular (eye) of dark pink/beetroot purple. This is an excellent plant but seems to have disappeared from nurseries.
Parahebe catarractae ‘Snow Cap’. This is a larger growing cultivar with prominent white flowers and veined magenta with a deeper magenta eye. Again a lovely plant for the garden and easily available from nurseries..