Lychnis Chalcedonica. Maltese Cross is a perennial that grows to a height of one to three feet. It produces a brilliant orange-red flower in July and August. Each flower head displays many cross-shaped blossoms. Maltese Cross is an old garden favorite. Many were introduced into colonial gardens and as many escaped to flourish in the wild.
Seeds germinate in three or four weeks at 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Plants can grow in partial shade or full sun. As they mature, clumps can be divided in spring or fall for additional plantings. Maltese Cross was in cultivation in east Russia in 1593.
Heirloom seeds are collected from the gardens and grounds of George Washington's Mount Vernon and cleaned and packaged by hand.