You can experience how this no-trouble rhizomatous ground cover earned its common name if, following a rain, you rub a leaf between your fingers—but it is Bergenia’s fine firm foliage mass and waxy Saxifraga-like flowers that justifies its presence in the garden. With bold, rounded outlines, the great, glossy, and nearly evergreen, rich green leaves are a handsome backdrop for dense heads of fetching spring blooms that rise above the cabbage-looking rosette on stalwart red-tinted stems. In winter, leaves become tinged with burgundy and are most welcome in holiday arrangements. Bergenia endures neglect, poor soil and some drought, but performs best in part shade.
Granted a well-earned 2009 AGM, ‘Wintermärchen’s winning year-round habit affords splendid, late-appearing pink-tinged white flowers, as well as prismatic cold weather charm. The pendulous bee-friendly blooms sojourn atop staunch reddish stems and a lush ultracold-hardy foundation. Smaller than most Bergenias, the polished green leaves grow in a distinctive vertical fashion, developing a somewhat elongated shape and later proving the namesake, which translates to ‘Winter Fairy Tale’, when warm scarlet and rubescent shades set them ablaze. Anemone leveillei and Geranium ‘Claudine Dupont’ make amiable companions.
Blooms late April–early June
Size: 12" – 15" high x 18" wide.
Hardy to zone 4.
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