• 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

Dicentra formosa

common bleeding heart

  • Other common names common bleeding heart
    western bleeding heart

    wild bleeding heart

    see more
  • Synonyms Dicentra eximia misapplied

  • Family Papaveraceae

  • Genus Dicentra can be rhizomatous or tuberous perennials with attractively divided leaves and pendent, heart-shaped flowers, usually in arching panicles or racemes

  • Details D. formosa is a wide-spreading rhizomatous perennial with abundant, lobed leaves 10-45cm long, mid-green above and glaucous beneath. Pendulous flowers are borne on branching, arching stems in late spring and early summer; usually pink, opening from deep rose-pink buds

  • Plant range Western N America

Characteristics

  • Foliage Deciduous

  • Habit Clump-forming

  • Toxicity All parts cause stomach ache if ingested

  • 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)

    H5

Colour

Sunlight

  • Partial Shade

  • Aspect North-facing or East-facing or West-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered

Soil

  • Clay

    Clay

  • Loam

    Loam

  • Chalk

    Chalk

  • MoistureMoist but well-drained

  • SoilClay, Loam, Chalk

  • pHAlkaline, Neutral

Size

  • Ultimate height 0.1-0.5 metres

  • Ultimate spread 0.5-1 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 2-5 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow in moist, fertile, humus-rich soil, preferably neutral or slightly alkaline; site in partial shade although will tolerate sunnier spot if the soil is moist

Propagation Propagate by division in early spring or after the leaves have died down. Propagate by seed, sowing seeds as soon as ripe or in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types Flower borders and beds Cut Flowers Ground Cover Underplanting of Roses and Shrubs Cottage & Informal Garden Rock Garden

How to care

Pruning No pruning required

Pests Slugs and snails can damage emerging foliage

Diseases Generally disease free

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