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The Perennial Wildflower You Should Be Planting Under Your Trees
Hepatica — also known as liverwort, pennywort, and liverleaf — is a perennial wildflower well-suited for shaded areas under trees because it thrives in partial to full shade.
This low-maintenance plant blooms in early spring with star-shaped flowers in shades of blue, purple, pink, and white. Its lobed leaves add visual interest all year long.
It prefers moist, well-drained soil that is neutral to slightly alkaline and rich in organic matter. For optimal growth, amend heavy clay soils with compost or peat moss.
Plant hepatica in the spring or fall, in a spot where it gets dappled sunlight or indirect light all day. Keep the soil consistently moist, especially during dry or hot periods.
While the plant typically does not require fertilization if the soil is rich, applying a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring can boost its growth and flowering.
Adding a layer of organic mulch, such as compost or leaf litter, around this wildflower helps conserve moisture, suppress weeds, and maintain a consistent
soil temperature.
Hepatica is resistant to rabbits and deer. However, if ingested, it can cause irritation, vomiting, and stomach pain, so it should be planted out of reach of children and pets.