Friday, 15 June 2012

Zone 3 Flower/Ground Cover: Coral Bells, Alumroot

Description: Coral bells is a superb low maintenance perennial valued more for its foliage than for its delicate flowers. Multi-colored foliage is mostly basal and comes in a variety of colors, from silvery purple to lime green to peach. May be evergreen or semi-evergreen. Airy flower spikes (panicles) rise above foliage and come in pink, red and white

Hardy: Zone 3

Bloom Time: Spring all the way to the end of summer

Height: 12'' - 36'' (depending on variety)

Spacing: 1 1/2'

Sun Needs: Part shade - Shade (can also handle full sun)

Water Needs: Medium

Outstanding Features: Variety of colors and can grow in full sun all the way to shade making it a great option for every location in your yard.

Uses: In masses, for edging, as a specimen plant and in containers. Use in a mixed perennial border or in a woodland shade garden. Combine with other shade-loving plants, including hosta and impatiens. The flower panicles make fine additions to cut flower arrangements

Tips: Coral bells blend well with other shade loving perennials including Astilbe, Dicentra, ferns, Hakonechloa, Helleborus, and Hostas. In sunny locations, they work well with numerous perennials such as Alchemilla, Artemisia, Carex, Corydalis, Geranium, Lamium, Lysimachia, and ornamental grasses.

To encourage continuous flowering or repeat bloom, deadhead the spent flower spikes as needed. Mulching during the summer months will help keep the soil moist and prevent injury to the shallow root system from heat. They can be divided every 3 to 4 years if they lose vigor or when the crown gets too large.

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