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Purple Elephant's Ears (Bergenia cordifolia Purpurea) 1Purple Elephant's Ears (Bergenia cordifolia Purpurea) 1

Purple Elephant's Ears Plants

Bergenia cordifolia PurpureaFeefo logo

The details

Elephant's Ears

Pot Grown Herbaceous Perennials
  • Colour: Magenta
  • Flowering: Mar-Apr
  • Foliage: Deep green leaves flushed red, turning purple in winter
  • Height x Spread: 60cm x 75cm
  • Position: Full sun or semi-shade
  • Soil: Any moist but well drained soil
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Description

Bergenia cordifolia Purpurea

Wonderful as ground cover with its broad foliage giving rise to its common name 'Elephant's Ears', Bergenia cordifolia Purpurea is one of those herbaceous plants that are perfect for low maintenance borders, sunny path edging and winter gardens. The deep green leaves are tinted with red, then develop purple tones in the winter. Spikes of magenta flowers appear on tall red stems in spring. Evergreen bergenia foliage makes a fabulous foil for early spring flowers, so why not leave a few spaces now to plant up with spring flowering bulbs this autumn?

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Great in your garden

For rich colour in winter when little else is performing, try combining Bergenia cordifolia Purpurea with other interesting foliage plants such as Arum italicum subsp. italicum 'Marmoratum' or Cyclamen hederifolia. The large evergreen leaves of this impressive Bergenia also work well as underplanted in the dappled shade of dogwoods and deciduous trees like silver birches.

Emerging from amidst the elephantine foliage in March, cheerful cerise-pink flowerheads create interest at the front of spring borders alongside other early flowering perennials such as Pulmonaria, Brunnera and Vinca minor. Later in the season, the broad leaves contrast beautifully with the strap-like foliage of grasses like Carex testacea and Stipa tenuissima.

Features

  • Colour: Clusters of magenta flowers on sturdy red stems
  • Flowering: Mar-Apr
  • Foliage: Deep green, broad leaves flushed red, turning purple in winter
  • Height: 60cm
  • Spread: 75cm
  • Position: Full sun or semi-shade
  • Soil: Any moist but well drained soil
  • Colour is best when planted in poor soil & full sun.

Did You Know?

Bergenia purpurea is one of a number of evergreens whose foliage changes colour as temperatures plummet in winter. This trait can be seen occurring from conifers like Juniperus horizontalis, or to Cistus and Mahonia.

Cultivation Instructions

Plant in full sun or part shade in humus-rich, moist but well drained soil. Water well until established.

Generally pest free, although may be susceptible to slug damage on foliage. Cut back faded flower stems in late spring and remove tatty foliage as necessary. Divide large clumps in early spring.