• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Calluna vulgaris

heather

heather

© RHS

  • Other common names heather
    ling

    basam
    bassum
    beesom
    besom
    Scotch heather
    Scottish heather
    Scots heather
    white heather

    see more
  • Synonyms Calluna erica
    Erica vulgaris

  • Family Ericaceae

  • Genus Calluna are low-growing or dwarf evergreen shrubs with stems clothed in tiny overlapping leaves, and terminal, spike-like racemes of small, 4-petalled flowers with coloured calyces

  • Details C. vulgaris has narrow, linear, small, evergreen leaves. Spikes of urn-shaped pink or pale purple flowers which are either single or double are borne from mid-summer to autumn. Plants reach around 60cm in height. Many cultivars have been both selected and bred

  • Plant range N N Am., N Eurasia

Characteristics

  • Foliage Evergreen

  • Habit Bushy

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)

    H7

Colour

Sunlight

  • Full Sun

  • Aspect South-facing or East-facing or West-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered or Exposed

Soil

  • Sand

    Sand

  • Clay

    Clay

  • Loam

    Loam

  • MoistureWell-drained, Moist but well-drained

  • SoilSand, Clay, Loam

  • pHAcid

Size

  • Ultimate height 0.5-1 metres

  • Ultimate spread 0.1-0.5 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 2-5 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow in well-drained acidic soil in full sun

Propagation Propagate by seed in spring, or propagate by softwood cuttings, division or layering in summer

Suggested planting locations and garden types Wildlife Gardens Rock Garden Coastal

How to care

Pruning Pruning group 10. Shear off old flowering stems after flowering

Pests Generally pest free

Diseases May be subject to fungal diseases and root diseases, especially in warmer locations

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