Go Back Bleeding Heart Old Fashioned Pink

Dicentra spectabilis
Deer Resistant IconHummingbird Icon

Plant Type: Perennials

A classic charmer! One of the oldest but still irreplaceable perennials in cultivation. Old-fashioned Bleeding Hearts form large, bushy clumps of powdery-green foliage comprised of cut or lobed leaves on fleshy stems. In late spring, chains of puffy heart-shaped flowers with rose-pink petals and white tips dangle beneath the arching, leafless stems. These racemes make delightful additions to fresh bouquets, lasting about 2 weeks in a vase. In cooler climates with adequate moisture, the bloom time may be extended into early summer. After putting on this fantastic display, Old-Fashioned Bleeding Hearts usually go dormant until the following spring. However, if plants are kept well-watered during the spring, dormancy may be delayed until late summer or early fall. Other bushy perennials, such as Hosta, Geranium, or Sedge, should be planted nearby to fill in the resulting gaps.

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Growing & Maintenance Tips:

Dicentra is most at home in woodland settings. It likes rich, loose soil that is evenly moist but also well-drained. At planting time, add lots of compost, humus, or peat moss to the soil to enhance its water retention capabilities. Plants will not grow well in heavy clay soils. Dicentra should be planted in locations that are protected from high winds and early frosts, such as the edges of woodlands or on the north or east sides of buildings. It may be propagated by division in either spring or fall, taking great care to keep the fleshy roots intact when transplanting.

Flower Color

Pink with white tips

Foliage Color


Plant Spread

30-36 in.

Good Companions

Astilbe-Hybrid (Astilbe ), Brunnera-Heartleaf (Brunnera macrophylla), Columbine (Aquilegia ), Geranium-Hardy (Geranium ), Grass-Ornamental (Carex hachijoensis), Hosta (Hosta ), Phlox-Woodland (Phlox divaricata laphamii), Solomon's Seal-Variegated (Polygonatum odoratum)

Plant Height

30-36 in.

Scape Height

Hardness Zone


Soil Moisture

Average and consistent water needs

Characteristics & Attributes


Cut flower or foliage, Border, Specimen, Container

Bloom Time

Late spring

Critter Resistance

Deer resistant


Full to part shade

Growth Rate


Seasonal Interests