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Epimedium x versicolor
Epimedium x versicolor

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Zones 2-9, 14-17, 31-43
Partial SunNo Sun
Partial, Shade
Regular WaterMinimal Water
Moderate, Minimal

Epimedium x versicolor

Ground covers, Perennials


Low growers with creeping underground stems. Thin, wiry leafstalks hold leathery leaves divided into heart-shaped leaflets 3–4 in. long. Foliage is bronzy pink in spring, green in summer, bronze in fall; even in deciduous species, leaves last late into the year. In spring, plants bear loose spikes of small, waxy flowers in pink, red, creamy yellow, or white. The flowers have four petals, which may be spurred or hooded, and eight sepals—four inner ones resembling petals and four (usually small) outer ones.

Use as a groundcover under trees or among rhododendrons, azaleas, camellias; set out plants 1 ft. apart. Good in large rock gardens and containers. Tolerate heavy shade. Foliage and flowers are long lasting in arrangements. Cut back in late winter before new growth resumes.

Epimedium x versicolor

Best known of several selections is ‘Sulphureum’, 12–20 in. tall, with light yellow flowers and semievergreen leaves marked with brownish red.

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