Spring is here! This means gardening and flowers and beautiful blooms! And although I have not been able to get outside and dig in the garden yet this year, my perennials are doing great on their own. There is something beautiful/peaceful about watching plants grow and bloom. And an easy-care plant that adds color in early spring is the “bleeding heart.” This perennial is easy to grow and requires minimal care. Bleeding hearts bloom shortly after tulips, around mid-late April here in the Pittsburgh area. This perennial does not have the traditional petals associated with flowers; instead, the bloom is like a teardrop or a bleeding heart as it is aptly named.
If you are looking to add interest and contrast to a shady spot in your garden–may I suggest the bleeding heart. The bleeding heart does well in shade or partial shade. It just needs to be watered until established. Fertilize and mulch it yearly, and other than that, this perennial should be a success. The bleeding heart is also deer and rabbit resistant–these plants have never been eaten in my garden, and we have lots of deer and rabbit coming through the yard.
A note on mulching: I mulch my bleeding heart every year, as I mulch all of my garden beds. I use double shredded mulch or mushroom manure. I took a gardening class this month at my local library, and a tip I learned regarding mulching was to not buy the colored mulch. The colored mulch is made from pallets which travel overseas and may have bugs (stink bugs etc.) and so the pallets are treated with chemicals, which may harm garden plants, flowers, etc.
But I digress, back to the bleeding heart: I love this early spring bloomer. I will have to divide it this year as it is getting really big.Bleeding hearts pair nicely with jack frost and lungwort or under a rhododendron.All of these plants add color and beauty in early spring. A great time to add these spring plants is late May or early June. They will be done blooming at local nurseries/garden stores and you can buy them discounted. Or better yet, ask a neighbor or friend if they want to trade some perennials. I love sharing my plants! And I have gotten so many different ones from friends and neighbors! Happy gardening on this first day of May!