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Garden Rock Cross Arabis caucasica

Previously known as:

  • Arabis albida
  • Arabis alpina
  • Arabis alpina subsp. caucasica
  • Arabis billardieri
Phonetic Spelling
AR-uh-biss kaw-KAS-ee-kuh
Description

This showy, sprawling evergreen perennial is native to crevices of limestone rocks, along streams and in calcareous alpine meadows of Europe, Canada and parts of the northern U.S. Ideal conditions for growth include a location with full sun and gritty, alkaline, well drained soil.  Once planted, it is advisable to let the plant remain in that spot as it does not like its roots disturbed.  

The sweet-scented flowers are typically white, however, varieties pink or rose.   Cut back foliage after bloom to promote denser growth habit. This will also encourage a more healthy foliage growth.  Failure to cut back can lead to long, bare branches with foliage only appearing at the ends, and will also limit the spread of its rhizomes.  

The leaves are edible, primarily used as a garnish.  

Wildlife Value: Members of the Arabis genus support the following specialized bees: Andrena (Scaphandrena) arabis.  This plant is deer and rabbit resistant.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious insect or disease problems.  Aphids are an occasional issue.  Root rot, white rust, and downy mildew may occur in overly moist or poorly drained soils. Plants tend to suffer in summer heat south of Zone 6.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Compinkie'
    Height to 2', rosy-pink flowers.
  • 'Flore Pleno'
    Late bloom, double, long-lasting white flowers.
  • 'Little Treasure Deep Rose'
    Rose-pink flowers, early bloom.
  • 'Rosabella'
    Rose colored blooms that fade as temperatures rise.
  • 'Snowball'
    4-6' height with white flowers.
  • 'Snow cap'
    Large white flowers, abundance of blooms.
  • 'Variegata'
    Variegated foliage
'Compinkie', 'Flore Pleno', 'Little Treasure Deep Rose', 'Rosabella', 'Snowball', 'Snow cap', 'Variegata'
Tags:
#evergreen#showy flowers#full sun tolerant#fragrant flowers#heat tolerant#drought tolerant#perennials#white flowers#wildlife plant#moths#spring flowers#rabbit resistant#stream banks#specialized bees#deer resistant#alpine#groundcover#rock garden#cutting garden#spring interest#pollinator plant#edible leaves#poor soils tolerant#compact habit#sandy soils tolerant#rocky soils tolerant#garden walls#dry soils tolerant#bee friendly#meadows#compact#butterflies#bees
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Compinkie'
    Height to 2', rosy-pink flowers.
  • 'Flore Pleno'
    Late bloom, double, long-lasting white flowers.
  • 'Little Treasure Deep Rose'
    Rose-pink flowers, early bloom.
  • 'Rosabella'
    Rose colored blooms that fade as temperatures rise.
  • 'Snowball'
    4-6' height with white flowers.
  • 'Snow cap'
    Large white flowers, abundance of blooms.
  • 'Variegata'
    Variegated foliage
'Compinkie', 'Flore Pleno', 'Little Treasure Deep Rose', 'Rosabella', 'Snowball', 'Snow cap', 'Variegata'
Tags:
#evergreen#showy flowers#full sun tolerant#fragrant flowers#heat tolerant#drought tolerant#perennials#white flowers#wildlife plant#moths#spring flowers#rabbit resistant#stream banks#specialized bees#deer resistant#alpine#groundcover#rock garden#cutting garden#spring interest#pollinator plant#edible leaves#poor soils tolerant#compact habit#sandy soils tolerant#rocky soils tolerant#garden walls#dry soils tolerant#bee friendly#meadows#compact#butterflies#bees
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Arabis
    Species:
    caucasica
    Family:
    Brassicaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Ground cover
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Mediterranean, Crimea, Turkey, Iran, Causcus
    Wildlife Value:
    Members of the Arabis genus support the following specialized bees: Andrena (Scaphandrena) arabis. This plant is deer resistant. Butterflies are attracted to the flowers.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Easy to Grow
    Fragrance
    Wildlife Food Source
    Wildlife Larval Host
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    dry, sandy, or rocky soil; drought; somewhat infertile soils
    Edibility:
    The leaves are edible.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 6 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 6 in. - 1 ft. 6 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Ground Cover
    Perennial
    Habit/Form:
    Mounding
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Fine
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Mountains
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4b, 4a, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Fruit Description:
    The seed pods will dry on the plant. Once dried, they can be opened to collect the seeds.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Good Cut
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    This plant has tiny, 4-petaled, 1/2" long white flowers bloom in spring. The blooms make excellent cut flowers.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Obovate
    Spatulate
    Leaf Margin:
    Dentate
    Denticulate
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    This plant has loose spreading rosettes of 2-inch long toothed, obovate, gray-green basal leaves. The foliage is very attractive cascading over walls or in a rock garden and makes an effective groundcover.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Multi-stemmed and erect.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Patio
    Slope/Bank
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Edible Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Specialized Bees
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Drought
    Dry Soil
    Heat
    Poor Soil
    Rabbits