Dicentra spectabilis

Dicentra spectabilis
Dicentra spectabilis 
bleeding heart
SIZE/TYPE mid-sized perennial
USUAL HEIGHT 1-1.3m
USUAL WIDTH 0.8-1m
LEAVES deciduous broadleaf
COLOUR OF LEAVES green
FLOWERS showy
COLOUR OF FLOWERS +multicolored:pink a white
BLOOMING TIME May - June
LOCATION full sun to shade
USDA zone (lowest) 4   (down to -34°C)
WINTER PROTECTION  
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Perennials
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Bleeding heart is a bit old-fashioned yet beautiful perennial commonly found in European gardens. It comes from Siberia and colder parts of China and Korea. The Japanese legend has it that the common name implies a young man whose love for a lady was rejected so he pierced his heart with a sword (the inner part of the flower) which caused his heart bleed. Much nicer name is a lady in the bath which is not really a name of the plant itself but more a description of the flower shape. Here’s the trick – hold the fully opened flower upside down and voilá – here it is – a white lady in a pink bath.

Bleeding heart flowers from late May until late June. The heart-shaped flowers are rich pink with white inner petals and release a faint but interesting fragrance. They are borne on arching stems and the whole plant looks so robust and shrubby that it is difficult to believe that this is a perennial that will soon, a few weeks after flowering, loose most of its leaves and stems as it goes dormant until the next year. The leaves are 20-40 cm long, divided and lobed, and resemble those of tree peonies.

Bleeding heart will grow in almost any constantly moist garden soil. It does not need full sun but if grown in full sun it requires some extra watering. It will thrive in humus-rich, neutral to slightly alkaline soil. Fertilizing is advised in poor soils in spring when flowering stems are being formed. All parts are slightly toxic and may cause allergies. It is fully hardy to min. -34°C (USDA zone 4) but allegedly takes much deeper frost (down to zone 3 or even 2).

Last update 16-01-2014
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Dicentra spectabilis
GLOSSARY
  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
LARGE PLANTS over 150 cmspecimens, screening and hedging shrubs

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