Known as ‘bleeding heart’, dicentra has one of the most unusually shaped flowers, by pulling back the outer petals to the stem you can easily see where it got its other common name of ‘lady in the bath’
Dicentra produces a small range of flower colours from pure white through pinks to a strong red.
Dicentra spectabalis is the most well known variety, growing to about 60cm (2 ft), it flowers in mid-spring with the flowers dangling from arching stems. It grows best in sheltered positions in partial shade. The are also some smaller varieties such as dicentra formosa and dicentra luxurient which grow to half the size of Dicentra spectabalis and so are more suited towards the front of a mixed border.
Dicentra suffers from very few pests, however it can be damaged by late frosts on the newly emerged foliage and dislikes waterlogging.
Dicentra is well suited to a cottage garden border flowering at the same time as perennial wallflowers – erysimum but it is versatile and can be planted as part of a mixed border with a wide range of shrubs and perennials.
|Dicentra spectabalis ‘Alba’||Dicenta ‘Stuart Boothman’||Dicentra spectabalis ‘Gold Heart’||Dicentra ‘King of Hearts’|