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A delightful woodland plant that is one of the first to wake in early spring, hepatica has pretty, starlike flowers that debut just after the snow melts in many areas. Hepatica flower colors range from white to pale blue to pink depending on the plant. Be sure to plant hepatica near the edge of a path or border so you can enjoy its flowers and foliage up close. After the springtime flowers fade, hepatica decorates shade gardens with deep green ground-hugging foliage.
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Colors of Hepatica
Create a woodland garden by pairing hepatica with other perennials that thrive in shade and moist, rich soil. Great planting companions include heuchera, bleeding heart, and lungwort. Hepatica grows only a few inches tall and wide so can get lost in the midst of more vigorous perennials. To get the best showing, plant hepatica in groups of three or more plants. Repeat hepatica groupings throughout the garden to create rhythm in your design. After hepatica's spring bloom, count on the semievergreen plant to blanket soil for a lush groundcover.
Hepatica grows best where it receives morning sun and afternoon shade or consistent shade. It thrives in moist, well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. At home in the nutrient-rich leaf litter of the forest floor, hepatica grows well in soil annually enriched with well-decomposed compost. Consistent moisture is also key to good growth. Hepatica thrives in soil that is moist but not wet. Plant hepatica in spring and water plants well after planting. Apply a 2-inch-thick layer of mulch to prevent weeds and moisture evaporation.
Hepatica will spread slowly by rhizomes to make a colony of ground-hugging foliage and diminutive spring flowers. Multiply hepatica by sowing seed in early summer or dividing existing plants after flowering. Dig up the entire clump and slice it into several sections. Replant the sections and water well.