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Chocoholic Bugbane

Cimicifuga racemosa 'Chocoholic'

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Chocoholic Bugbane (Cimicifuga racemosa 'Chocoholic') at Ashcombe Farm & Greenhouses

Cimicifuga racemosa 'Chocoholic' foliage

Cimicifuga racemosa 'Chocoholic' foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  4 feet

Spread:  3 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade  full shade 

Hardiness Zone:  4a

Other Names:  Black Snakeroot, Black Cohosh, Actaea racemosa

Description:

Beautiful chocolate-purple, fragrant foliage and long, airy upright spikes of white flowers; prefers moist, but well-drained soil; use this plant primarily for its wonderful contrasting leaves

Ornamental Features

Chocoholic Bugbane is blanketed in stunning spikes of fragrant white flowers with shell pink overtones rising above the foliage from mid to late summer. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its attractive deeply cut compound leaves emerge deep purple in spring, turning dark gray in color with distinctive black veins throughout the season. The brown fruits are carried on spikes from late summer to late winter. The dark red stems are very colorful and add to the overall interest of the plant.

Landscape Attributes

Chocoholic Bugbane is an herbaceous perennial with tall flower stalks held atop a low mound of foliage. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other garden plants with less refined foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Chocoholic Bugbane is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • General Garden Use
  • Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Chocoholic Bugbane will grow to be about 4 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 3 feet. It tends to be leggy, with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and should be underplanted with lower-growing perennials. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.

This plant performs well in both full sun and full shade. It prefers to grow in moist to wet soil, and will even tolerate some standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This is a selection of a native North American species. 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.

Chocoholic Bugbane is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. 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  Garden  Naturalizing  Container 
Applications
Flowers  Fruit  Foliage Color  Texture  Bark  Winter Value 
Ornamental Features