Botanical Name: Dicentra spectabilis
Common Name: Common Bleeding Heart  
Plant photo of: Dicentra spectabilis
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Water Saving Tip:

Fix leaking sprinklers, valves, and pipes.

One broken spray sprinkler can waste 10 gallons per minute - or 100 gallons in a typical 10 minute watering cycle.

  • Anatomy

  • Culture

  • Design

Plant Type



Height Range



Flower Color

Pink, White, Multi-Colored


Flower Season



Leaf Color

Green, Blue Green


Bark Color



Fruit Color



Fruit Season



Half, Shade



Medium, High


Growth Rate



Soil Type

Clay, Loam


Soil Condition

Average, Rich, Well-drained, Moist


Soil pH



Adverse Factors


Design Styles

English Cottage, Woodland


Accenting Features

Showy Flowers


Seasonal Interest



Location Uses

Background, Perennial Border


Special Uses

Cut Flowers


Attracts Wildlife


Information by: Stephanie Duer
Photographer: Linda Engstrom/Mullany
  • Description

  • Notes

Bleeding heart is an old-fashioned garden perennial with mounds of deeply lobed foliage and arching stems hung with pink and white heart-shaped flowers. Blooms appear April and May, and the plant may reach 2 to 3 feet in height with the flowers. Width is about 20 to 30 inches. Plant it where it will be disguised in the summer months, as the foliage typically goes dormant; shade-loving perennial grasses, late leafing shrubs, or shady annuals are a good choice.
Grow in well drained, loamy soil in part to full shade. Doesn't tolerate dry sites as well as the other species. In our region, in the heat of the summer it tends to go dormant and the foliage goes yellow; snip it off and mulch around the base. Sometimes, in a long fall, it will re-emerge and even flower again, but generally, you just wait until the next spring, just like the tulips and daffodils.