If you’re a beginner in the plant community, you should know about the different Bleeding Heart plant varieties. Please read our complete beginner’s guide below to find out more!
Bleeding Hearts, or Dicentra, are shade-preferring perennials with an apparent romantic character. There are plenty more types in the Dicentra species known as Bleeding Hearts. Still, these are wildflowers that people don’t typically grow in cultivation.
Found in Eastern Asia and North America, Bleeding Hearts have hanging heart-shaped flowers that are highly impervious to deer. They are also extremely desirable to pollinators since they are remarkably cold-resilient. Learn more about the Bleeding Heart plant varieties and how to care for them in this complete beginner’s guide!
What Is A Bleeding Heart Plant?
The Bleeding Heart plant is an herbaceous cultivar with a perennial lifespan. It is famous for its arching stalks, blue-green greenery, short flowering time, sturdy dormancy stage, and characteristic heart-shaped blossoms. These wildflowers can mature outdoors in a woodland yard and inside as houseplants if you meet their requirements for shade and humus-full soil.
Bleeding Heart Plant Varieties
Various Bleeding Heart plants can mature in the shady areas of your yard in spring. Here are five popular ones you should know about:
- Lamprocapnos spectabilis: That traditional Bleeding Heart type also has the name Dicentra spectabilis—both are synonymous. The ‘Alba’ form has characteristic white flowers, while the ‘Gold Heart’ version has gold vegetation.
- Dicentra cucullaria: Its common name is the Dutchman’s breeches, and these white Bleeding Heart plants look like they come in pairs.
- Dicentra eximia: You can also call it a fringed Bleeding Heart. This ferny houseplant has pink flowers with minute wings.
- Dicentra Formosa: Here is a cultivar plant from the Pacific area of the globe. Its wildflowers have more length than some of its other versions.
- Dicentra’ King of Hearts’: Most people call it the fern-leaf Bleeding Heart, which is famous for its red blossoms.
Where To Plant A Bleeding Heart
These plants flourish where the dirt drains appropriately and can get mild to moderate cover. In northern regions, pink Bleeding Hearts can handle direct sunlight. They prefer evenly moist (but not damp), humus-full dirt but like a bit of shade somewhere else—conversely, white flowering varieties like shade everywhere.
Suppose you see pools of water five to six hours after heavy rain. Finding another site or fixing the soil with organic nutrients would be best to raise the level by two to three inches. These plants are ideal for pots or outdoor plantings but don’t flourish in damp soil or stagnant water.
When To Plant A Bleeding Heart
It’s better to plant a Bleeding Heart when spring begins and after the risk of frost passes while still in its dormancy period. Dormant bare-root Bleeding Hearts are convenient to manage and tend to mature quickly. You should expect sturdy roots to grow in the fall, with shoots and blossoms growing in the spring.
How To Plant A Bleeding Heart
Look for an area where the dirt drains properly for outside landscape planting. That way, your Bleeding Heart plant can get mild to moderate cover. Dig a hole two to two and a half inches apart and stick your plants into the earth. Keep the roots aimed downwards and the growing points around an inch under the dirt level. Add in the dug-out soil and pat it down firmly.
Get an easy-draining, humus-full potting medium and pots with proper drainage holes for pot planting. The holes should have adequate size to house the mature version of your plant. Dig a hole 18 inches apart and stick the plant with its roots aimed downwards and the growing points around an inch under the dirt level. Add the dug-out soil and firmly pat it down.
How To Grow A Bleeding Heart
You must water the plant as required during its growing stages, providing about one inch of moisture each week. Leave the plant in place after it finishes blooming for the season. The leaves can collect daylight to make food through photosynthesis, fortifying the plant for its future.
Trim off any dry parts when the leaves become yellow and die during summer. Let your Dicentra plants relax for a few months while they’re dormant before starting the next growing stage in spring.
Bleeding Heart Plant Care Factors
Bleeding Heart plant varieties can die in the summer heat, but they grow back in spring. Once they become yellow and lifeless, you can trim the foliage back into the ground. It’s essential to be patient till this stage since the leaves focus on gathering and storing food and energy for the coming year. You can also remove dead flower stalks to make your plant look clean.
Bleeding Heart plant varieties can withstand winter temperatures between -50 F and 30 F. Any lower than that. It can be challenging for them to reach their full potential. Research your Hardiness Zone to learn whether your yard meets the conditions. Conversely, keeping Bleeding Hearts indoors can allow you to maintain the ideal temperatures all year round.
Bleeding Hearts prefer moist potting mediums, so you should water them at one-week intervals. Before planting a Bleeding Heart, spread some mulch (organic material) around your garden to provide a healthy medium pH for the plant. Organic dirt can help keep the Bleeding Heart healthy and give its roots adequate room to grow and mature.
Amendments And Fertilizer
Use time-release manure in the plant’s surrounding dirt when new blossoms grow in spring. You can add extra compost if that’s what you prefer.
Water the plants regularly through spring and winter to keep the dirt moist but not damp. Bleeding Hearts can’t handle wet earth or dry soil in the summer.
Bleeding Heart plant varieties can grow large bunches of roots. You must divide them at two to three-year intervals. You can separate them in the spring when they start growing again or in the early autumn when you trim the plant back. Dig it up safely and divide using a sharp trowel or garden tool. Relocate sections throughout your garden or give some to your friends.
As Bleeding Hearts mature, you may decide to plant them all around your garden. Relocating or potting the plant is straightforward. You can dig up its bare roots and separate them or plant stem trimmings in new dirt. They start to grow as soon as the climate allows.
To improve the shade, these plants can get in your yard and grow other plants nearby as ground cover. Species like coral bells, hellebores, and astilbe flowers can offer adequate shade. They also look aesthetic and work well with Bleeding Heart plants as cut blossoms.
Bleeding Heart plant varieties require shade more than other plant species in your yard. They can withstand direct sunlight exposure in colder areas. It’s still an ideal practice to grow them in as much shade as feasible unless you’re preparing for the dormancy period as soon as the summer arrives.
Diseases And Pests
Bleeding Hearts don’t have any severe disease or pest issues, though they can be vulnerable to aphids, snails, and slugs. Invasions like downy mildew and fungal leaf spot can also happen. Bleeding Heart plant varieties are susceptible to soap-based chemicals, so you should test your pest control sprays and products on a few leaves beforehand.
Hopefully, this article gave you all the information you need about different bleeding heart plant varieties and how to take care of them. With some practice and more research, you should soon have a garden full of them. Happy gardening!
Victoria is the owner and main author of hobby plants. She loves spending her free time in her garden planting and taking care of her plants. Victoria hopes you enjoy the content here!