The Bleeding Heart Bush apparently gets its name from how it looks like. Although its scientific name is Lamprocapnos Spectabilis, it is almost never referred to like that, and that’s because of how cool its other name is.
This plant has pillow-like flowers that are shaped like a heart with a single dangling pendulous drop. If you grow this plant, you’ll notice how it is a plant that loves the shade more than sunny weather.
It blooms during the cool days of the spring and stays blooming for several weeks after. After blooming for some time, this plant becomes ephemeral and disappears for the rest of the summer days if it is exposed to too much heat or sunlight.
But worry not the plant isn’t actually dead. In fact, its roots are very much alive and will regrow either during the fall or the next spring. And what’s even better is that the fringed-leaf varieties will continue to bloom throughout the summer days, too.
This plant originates from Siberia, northern China, Korea, and Japan. It’s also the only species in the monotypic genus Lamprocapnos and is sometimes referred to as Dicentra Spectabilis.
If this plant interests you then you’re going to want to know how you can grow it on your own in your garden, front or back yard. So, let’s check out how you can do that!
How to Grow the Bleeding Heart Bush
The first thing you need to know is that if you live in a warm area, then you’re going to have a tougher time growing and taking care of this plant.
This plant likes moist soil, but it won’t survive long if the ground is heavy and wet. The roots may even rot if the plant is left with wet feet for too long.
When it comes to light, this plant prefers partial shade and does not like to spend too much time under the sunlight. It would be best if you plant it near another tree that can protect it from the sun.
The plant grows best in soil that is humus-rich, moist, and one that has lots of organic matter. As of the soil’s pH, it doesn’t care much and would do just fine in any condition.
Spread 2 to 3 inches of organic matter on the soil, you can use compost or even well-rotted manure.
You would want to create a loose soil that would allow the roots to grow. You can do this by working the soil to improve the aeration.
When it’s summertime, you should keep the plant well-watered throughout the hot days. The warmer the weather gets the more water it is going to need. And don’t worry if the flowers disappear despite your watering it, they will bloom again in the fall or spring.
Although the western bleeding heart bush tolerates drought more than the other kinds, it is still advised to keep it well-watered, just to eliminate any risk of it dying.
If you want to know when your plant needs water. The soil moisture meter will save you a lot of headaches and keep your plant healthy.
One last thing is to make sure the soil is moist and NOT wet.
The bleeding heart bush can tolerate humidity just fine. But, it should always stay at 55° to 75° Fahrenheit.
This plant doesn’t need that much fertilizer, it all depends on what type of soil you planted it in.
If your soil is rich and organic and you amend it every year, you can eliminate using fertilizers altogether. Otherwise, you can just use some leaf mold and you’re good to go.
How to Care for the Bleeding Heart Bush
What’s best about this plant is that other from water and heat, it doesn’t require that much care after it sets its roots in the soil.
But, there are a few things you need to look out for nonetheless.
Since this plant will bloom again every time its flower disappears, you don’t need to prune it at all.
If you want it to go to seed then you should leave the flowers on. What you can do is trim back the foliage when they start to turn ugly.
Pests and Diseases
You have nothing to fear since deer and rabbits usually ignore this plant and don’t even consider eating it. But you might have to deal with the occasional snails and slugs that will try to damage the young foliage, so you might want to invest in slug bait to get rid of it.
The following are some problems you may come across when you want to care for the Bleeding heart plant:
- Yellow Leaves: If you see them before mid-summer that could mean that you’re feeding it too much water, which in turn leads to rotting the roots. It could also mean that an exposed location doesn’t have enough water, too much heat or sun, or the soil pH level is too high.
- Using Peat moss or sulfur can adjust the pH level.
- Aphids: These small, green, and flightless insects cluster on tender foliage and suck plant juices.
- You can either spray them using a hose or spray them with insecticidal soap.
- White Powder: Downey mildew forms white powders on the leaves that can sometimes be damaging to the plant.
- You can control the white powder if you improve the air circulation or by spraying some fungicide.
Growing the Bleeding Heart flower can be a lot of fun. It will surely add a unique feel and look to your garden or front yard, and it isn’t that hard to take care of after you plant it.
We hope this article was beneficial for you and we wish you the best of luck with your Bleeding Heart bush.