Heuchera plant is a perennial plant native to North America from the family Saxifragaceae. They are commonly known as Coral bells plant and Alumroot.
These plants are grown mainly for their beautiful foliage that has a fantastic color range.
Heuchera plants can be grown as edgings, foundations, borders, beds, group plantings, naturalized areas, or as a non-traditional groundcover.
They are tolerant of dry conditions. They are categorized as an evergreen, meaning they keep their foliage well into the winter.
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Coral bells flower
Coral bells have small bunches of flowers that grow on a long stalk attracting hummingbirds.
The flower looks like tiny little bells, and that is the reason they are called Coral bells.
How much water does the Heuchera plant need?
Heucheras plants are Shallow rooted plants, so it needs regular watering at the same time it does not like waterlogging.
Too much water will lead to root rot, especially in the winter.
Coral bells full sun
They are woodland plants, so they don’t need full sun or full shade. They can be fine in the shade.
Coral bell foliage with silver, yellow, lime green need more shade.
The bright and rich color Coral bell foliage like red, brown, maroon, and black can go in full sun or partial shade.
What pest can attack Heuchera plants?
Heuchera is slug resistant and has relatively few pests.
They do get attacked by leaf spots, powdery mildew, strawberry root weevil or black vine, mealybug, foliar nematode.
When mealybugs attack the base and stems, forcefully wash plants with water and mild detergent or insecticidal soap regularly.
Weevil larvae initial start feeding on smaller roots but move to the large roots or the base of the crown as the mature.
The brown or black adults emerge in late May to early June can be treated with an insecticide that has some residual activity such as acephate.
In fall, beneficial nematodes can be applied to the soil around the plants to help control weevil larvae.
Heuchera Coral bells Propagation
Heucheras can be grown from seed, cuttings and by division.
Coral bells seedlings
Coral bells from seed:
Seeds can be sown indoors in the late winter and outdoors in the spring.
Sowing indoor: First, add seed starting mix in the seed trays and sprinkle the seeds evenly (not dense) over the top of the soil mix.
It needs light to germinate.
Place the tray near a window or place it under grow lights.
Keep the surface moist but not wet until it germinates.
It takes a few weeks to germinate. After the seedling gets the second set of leaves, transplant them into 3-4 inches pot.
Sowing outdoor: Sprinkle the seeds directly after the soil has begun to warm up in the spring. No need to cover them as Heuchera seedlings are tough.
Most of them will germinate with little attention.
Dividing heuchera in spring
Heuchera should be divided when it becomes woody (about every three years). Spring is the best time to remove dead leaves, propagate, or transplant Heuchera.
Dig around the Heuchera. Dig the root ball up and try not to disturb the roots. Divide it by pulling apart into two divisions.
You can put back one section in the same spot and another division in a new location.
Coral bells propagation through Cuttings:
Observe the crown for the individual stems. Cut the stem at the very base. Take off some excess leaves. Try to keep around 2-3 leaves and don’t remove fresh leaves.
The ideal time to do this in spring when the weather is encouraging the root growth. Plant the cutting into a new location.
Heuchera is a very hardy plant. Its stem holds a lot of moisture. It can be without roots for a long time and gives them an extra chance of rooting.
What kind of soil do Heucheras prefer?
Heuchera can grow in all types of soil, but it thrives in well-drained organic soil.
Avoid heavy clay soil. If the soil is heavy or is not free draining, add lots of organic matter such as compost, which will lighten up and improve the drainage.
Planting in raised beds is another option.
What is the fertilizer requirement of Coral bells?
Coral bells are light feeders though it will benefit from the regular application of water-soluble fertilizers.
Is Heuchera toxic to animals?
Heuchera is non-toxic to Cats, Dogs, and Horses.
In what zones Coral bells can be grown?
Most coral bells are hardy in Zones 4-8. There are lot Varieties are in the market that can be grown in Zone 3 and 9 as well.
For example, “Crème de Menthe” tolerates the heat and humidity of zone 11.
Palace purple coral bells
Palace Purple is one of the well-recognized and widely planted varieties of all Heucheras. It was the 1991 Perennial Plant Association Plant of the Year.
Unlike other cultivars and varieties, plants grown from these seeds always be like its parent.
Coral bells varieties
- Bronze beauty – Big leaves and hairy.
- Mocha – Smaller leaves, darker in color and heat tolerant.
- Binoche – It has darker leaves.
- Electric lime – It has hairy leaves. If temperature cools off it get red veins.
- Southern Comfort – Heat tolerant, glows beautifully when sun falls on the leaf, they have big leaves.
- Blackberry Ice
- Dale’s Strain – Beautiful dark veins, silver patches (it likes southeast weather). If grown from its seeds, the plant look the same.
- Berry smoothie – Bright Purpley red.
- Caramel – Very hardy.
- Mahogony – Reddish purple leaf back, blooms very vigorously all summer, heat tolerant.
- Sugar plum – Silvery leaves, blooms all summer, heat tolerant.
- Miracle –little bigger and vigorous, Change color radically in the cold weather.
- Tiramisu – Change color radically in the cold weather.
- Pinot Gris
Is Heucherella a variety of Heuchera?
The hybrid/combination of Heuchera and Tiarella (foam flower) is called Heucherella.
Its flowers resemble Tiarella and the leaves are from Heuchera. Heucherella has long blooming characteristics.
Some of the varieties of Heucherella:
- Sweet Tea (foamy bells) – Super heat resistant, tolerates heat and humid, foliage changes with the seasons.
- Alabama sunrise – Green and get red veins and turns red in the winter.
- Burnished Bronze – It blooms not stop.