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White Wild Bleeding Heart

Dicentra eximia 'Alba'

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White Wild Bleeding Heart (Dicentra eximia 'Alba') at Ashcombe Farm & Greenhouses

Dicentra eximia 'Alba' flowers

Dicentra eximia 'Alba' flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  12 inches

Spacing:  15 inches

Sunlight:  partial shade  full shade 

Hardiness Zone:  3a

Other Names:  Fringed Bleeding Heart, Plume Bleeding Heart

Description:

Lacy light green foliage on a compact mound with delicate, white dangling heart-shaped flowers on nodding stems, like little jewels in the garden; likes moist, shady areas

Ornamental Features

White Wild Bleeding Heart features delicate nodding white heart-shaped flowers dangling from the stems from late spring to mid summer. Its ferny compound leaves remain light green in color throughout the season. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

White Wild Bleeding Heart is an herbaceous perennial with a mounded form. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.

This plant will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. It is a good choice for attracting butterflies to your yard, but is not particularly attractive to deer who tend to leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;

  • Self-Seeding

White Wild Bleeding Heart is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • Rock/Alpine Gardens
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

White Wild Bleeding Heart will grow to be about 10 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 18 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 15 inches apart. Its foliage tends to remain low and dense right to the ground. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years. As this plant tends to go dormant in summer, it is best interplanted with late-season bloomers to hide the dying foliage.

This plant does best in partial shade to shade. It prefers to grow in average to moist conditions, and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is quite intolerant of urban pollution, therefore inner city or urban streetside plantings are best avoided. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone over the growing season to conserve soil moisture. This is a selection of a native North American species, and parts of it are known to be toxic to humans and animals, so care should be exercised in planting it around children and pets. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

White Wild Bleeding Heart is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a mass of flowers against which the thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Massing  Rock  Edging  Garden  Container 
Applications
Flowers  Texture  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features