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dicentra bleeding heart

Wiltshire, United Kingdom Gb

earlier this year i brought a bleeding heart plant although there werent many flowers this year i was hoping next year would be when it really produces the beautiful flowers. however i have just been in my garden and have noticed the plant is starting to die back. is this normal and will it be back next year? Also do i need to do anything to protect it over winter?



Hi Womble, it is normal for the dicentra to die back no need to do anything to or for just keep a look out for next spring.

17 Sep, 2009


very pleased to hear that. thanks moon grower.

17 Sep, 2009


I'd just add I'm amazed its only dying back now - usually what happens is, it flowers, and within a month of the flowers finishing, you've got an empty spot in the border ,because the leaves die back immediately! Only to return the following year, though.

17 Sep, 2009


hi bamboo. the plant only managed about 5 flowers over the whole summer so i'm guessing that will be why it has lasted so long.

17 Sep, 2009


No, mine are only now dying back, too - and they flowered really well!

17 Sep, 2009


I'll throw a spanner in the works too and say that mine are still fully clothed !

I deadheaded throughout the summer and they kept flowering until about 4 weeks ago but there's still all the foliage present.

Mine is D. 'King of Hearts', the smaller one, do you think varieties differ that much ?

Interesting subject.

17 Sep, 2009


Yes, I reckon so, Louise. I have been waiting for mine to disappear! Mine are D. spectabilis, a white one and a pink.

17 Sep, 2009


Extraordinary - one of my gardening books actually says, re Dicentra spectabilis, that it is a bit of a nuisance, this plant, because of the bare patch it leaves in the border by end of July - and that's certainly been my experience. Though I have noticed that it sometimes regrows about 3/4 weeks later.

17 Sep, 2009


The great thing about plants is that they can't read the books Bamboo... The number of times I read 'X will do this' or 'Y can't grow in shade/sun/wind' plants get on and grow as they will.

In Austria is June we saw a daphne which is supposed to only grow in partial shade out on a bare hillside flowering its heart out.

17 Sep, 2009


I take the point, Moongrower, but it has been my experience with this plant as well.

17 Sep, 2009


mine are now starting to die back
been doing my head in with just foliage for ages
x x

17 Sep, 2009


Mine are just starting to die back now but most years they do it earlier

17 Sep, 2009


Bamboo, I guess the point I was trying to make is that you have to take all book info with a large pinch of salt.

The author can only write about their own experiences and what they themselves have read. Given different situations the same plant will behave in different ways.

Where you live, what your soil is, how you grow the plant will all influence the way it grows, and dies back.

Personally I'm extremely glad that plants can't read or we wouldn't be growing some of the thing that we are :-)

At the end my advice Bamboo is not to trust a book to tell you the correct info - read the monographs on the same species and you will get three entirely different sets of info - all based on the authors opinion and views... and that is all each of us has - an opinion and a view. Hopefully anyone who asks a question realises that.

17 Sep, 2009


And hopefully, the questioner interprets the various answers in that way, Moongrower.

17 Sep, 2009


well i have to agree with you all. one large plant left a lovely bare bit of earth in june whilst the others are stil in full leaf even if they are starting to teun yellow. the bare earth one just gets a little more sun so i guess the ground is drier there.

17 Sep, 2009

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