Growing Heuchera (Coral Bells)


Growing Heuchera transcript

I'm here at the shade border at White Flower Farm, next to Heuchera called Primo™ Black Pearl. Heucheras have the common name of Alumroot and Coral Bells.

Heuchera are grown mainly for their foliage and in recent years, determined breeders have turned these perennials into some of the most glamorous foliage plants. You will find leaves in shades of green to silver, chartreuse, orange, and nearly black.

In summer, Heucheras send up long, thin stems with dainty, bell-shaped blossoms in shades of pink, red, white, or green, which appear to float above the foliage. Cut spent flowers spikes at the base to encourage more leaf growth.

Coral Bells are shallow-rooted and need regular watering if there is no rain. Good drainage is essential, especially in winter. These compact plants flower well in full sun to part shade in the North, and need at least afternoon shade in warmer climates. Varieties with vividly colored foliage are best grown in light shade to prevent bleaching. They are not a deer’s favorite item at the salad bar, but they will munch on them from time to time.

Both Coral Bells and Foamy Bell, which is a cross between Heuchera and Tiarella, are lovely with Ferns, Hosta, and Pulmonaria. Varieties with silver foliage are especially attractive with blue Hosta.

Heucheras do not require much care besides regular watering their first year. These shallow-rooted plants need a full growing season to become established before winter,, so in the fall, do not prune, divide or transplant your Coral Bells.

Plants sometimes have a tendency to heave out of the ground during freeze-thaw cycles, so you may want to mulch your Heuchera with hay or evergreen boughs in late fall.

In spring, remove dead leaves. At this time, clumps that are three to five years old may be divided. If the crowns of your Coral Bells have been raised up above ground level, add soil up to the base of the crowns.

This is a beautiful plant for containers and garden. Hummingbirds are attracted to their dainty flowers, and when they’re not blooming, their leaves are the star of the show.

For more information on all the varieties we offer of Heuchera and Heucherella, visit our website.