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Bergenia Bergenia crassifolia

Previously known as:

  • Bergenia cordifolia
Phonetic Spelling
behr-GEEN-ee-ah krass-ih-FOH-lee-uh
Description

Bergenia has large, glossy evergreen leaves produced in spreading clumps, and makes a lovely ground cover in shady areas.  Although it is considered drought-tolerant, the leaves will dry out if the soil is allowed to remain dry for an extended period.  Considered to be evergreen in more temperate areas of the country but will sustain winter damage in northern areas.  

Typically blooms from March to May, however, when grown in the southernmost areas, it can bloom as early as December. 

The common name pigsqueek comes into play when rubbing a leaf between your fingers and producing a sound much like the animals' squeal.

It can be found growing on shady, north-facing rocks, slopes, and in forest streams.  Growing best in soil with high organic matter, it will also flourish in a variety of soils, even clay.  

The roots, leaves, and stems contain tannin in different percentages.  Tannin is used in the production of leather and ink.

Insects, Diseases and Other Plant Problems:   

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Purpurea'
  • 'Rotblum'
'Purpurea', 'Rotblum'
Tags:
#evergreen#partial shade#drought tolerant#perennial#pink flowers#shade tolerant#winter interest#rabbit resistant#herbaceous#herbaceous perennial#groundcover#spring interest
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Purpurea'
  • 'Rotblum'
'Purpurea', 'Rotblum'
Tags:
#evergreen#partial shade#drought tolerant#perennial#pink flowers#shade tolerant#winter interest#rabbit resistant#herbaceous#herbaceous perennial#groundcover#spring interest
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Bergenia
    Species:
    crassifolia
    Family:
    Saxifragaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Siberia to North Korea
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 1 ft. 6 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 9 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Ground Cover
    Perennial
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3b, 3a, 4b, 4a, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Panicle
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Glossy
    Leathery
    Leaf Shape:
    Obovate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Large, 8" x 7" glossy evergreen leaves produced in spreading clumps.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Leafless stems up to 18" tall are topped with panicles of blooms in the spring.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Rock Wall
    Slope/Bank
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Shade Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought