You may have heard of the Alumroot plant … sometimes it’s called a Coral Bell too … but it’s real name is Heuchera, and it’s a beautiful perennial that comes in a variety of different colors.
Heucheras are easy plants to grow and care for, and they’re a nice fit for both garden beds and container gardens alike. They’re pretty fast growing with a little sun, but love afternoon shade. Generally speaking, the darker the leaf color, the more sun-tolerant these plants are. But with too much sun, their color will fade quickly, so be careful where you plant them!
Heucheras feature very compact, tight foliage with a few taller, flowering sprouts in the middle. The “obsidian” variety have dark purple buds that turn into cream-colored flowers when they bloom in the late spring / early summer months. You’ll usually find these lovely plants paired with other shade-friendly flowers and shrubs in ornamental landscape designs.
As a group, “Coral Bells” offer a wide range of foliage colors and shapes. The Obsidian variety is a deep, dark purple plant with shiny leaves. Other varieties produce hues of amber, green, gold pink, purple (light to dark), and silver veined. All in all, there are more than 50 different species of Heucheras, so it’s not surprising that it comes in so many shapes and colors. The leaves of these plants can be heart-shaped, triangular or rounded, and may be smooth, wavy or ruffled.
With so many styles, it’s hard to choose which is our favorite, but rest assured there is a color and shape perfectly suited to every landscape design! Also, they are known to attract butterflies and hummingbirds in the summer months. With that in mind, they’re a perfect addition to bed borders and container gardens.
Most varieties grow to between 8 and 12 inches high, and spread about 18 inches wide. When they’re in bloom, the flowering stalks reach about 2 feet. Wherever you plant them, make sure they have well-drained soil and afternoon shade, and they’ll provide amazing color to your yard or patio. As for maintenance, these plants love to be regularly watered and can be cut down to 2-3” from the ground in the late fall / early spring. If you want more blooms in the spring/summer, you can deadhead the flowers after they fade. That’s it for maintenance!
They’re easy to grow, require very little maintenance, and for the most part, are insect and disease-resistant. In short, they’re just about the perfect perennial plant!
If you’re looking to add some color and variety to your garden beds, and the conditions are right, we’d highly recommend Heuchera plants. And if you’re looking for a full garden overhaul, give us a shout! We’d be happy to help design the perfect landscape for your home.