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Lewisia brachycalyx
  • RHS AGM

short-sepal bitter-root

L. brachycalyx is a deciduous, tufted perennial to 8cm in height, forming a rosette of narrow fleshy dark green leaves, with solitary white or pale pink flowers 3-5cm in width, borne just above the foliage

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Size
Ultimate height
Up to 10cm
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0–0.1 metre
Growing conditions
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Pink White Green
Summer Pink White
Autumn Green
Winter Green
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Exposed
Hardiness
H4
Botanical details
Family
Montiaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Tufted
Genus

Lewisia can be herbaceous or evergreen perennials forming rosettes of fleshy leaves, with panicles of open funnel-shaped flowers in a wide range of colours in spring and summer

Name status

Correct

Plant range
SW USA

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How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile, humus-rich, very well-drained, neutral to acid soil in full sun; a gravel top-dressing helps to keep foliage dry. Protect from winter wet; dies down in summer when it needs protecting from rain because it is dormant. Suitable for cultivation in a container in an alpine house

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in pots in a cold frame in autumn

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Patio and container plants
  • Gravel garden
  • Rock garden
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

Deadhead after flowering

Pests

Prone to aphids under glass and to slugs and snails outdoors

Diseases

Prone to neck rot in wet conditions

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