How to Care for Heuchera Plants


Heuchera (Heuchera sanguinea) is a perennial bloomer with small, bell-shaped blooms that grow atop tall, sturdy stems and attractive, mottled foliage. Although heuchera is commonly known as coral bells, heuchera is available not only in coral, but in shades of pink, red, salmon, and white, some varieties boasting lacy purple or burgundy foliage. Heuchera is a durable plant, with most varieties suitable for growing in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 3 to 9.

Things You'll Need

  • Mulch
  • Shovel
  • Plant heuchera in nearly any type of well-draining soil. Do not plant in clay-based soil. While heuchera grows in full sun or full shade, a spot is best where the plant enjoys morning sunlight but is protected during the heat of the afternoon.

  • Water heuchera regularly as needed to keep the soil moist. Allow the soil to dry slightly between watering, but never let the soil become bone dry. While heuchera doesn't like completely dry soil, it also doesn't do well in wet, soggy soil. A 1- to 2-inch layer of mulch conserves water and helps keep the soil evenly moist. Compost is an effective mulch that also enriches the soil.

  • Divide heuchera every three years to keep the plant vigorous, as the center of the plant dies down and becomes unproductive. To divide heuchera, dig up the entire clump, then pull the plant apart into smaller clumps, each with four or five shoots and a healthy root system. Discard the old, woody center, then replant the original plant. Plant the new clumps in spots that have been prepared ahead of time.

  • Deadhead spent blooms on your heuchera plant throughout the blooming season. Deadheading often causes a second flush of blooms to appear in autumn. To deadhead, pinch off the blooms with your fingernails as soon as the flowers wilt.

  • Spread a fresh, 3- to 4-inch layer of mulch around heuchera after the first freeze in autumn. Although heuchera is cold tolerant, mulch protects the roots from possible damage caused by repeated freezing and thawing.

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