Asclepias tuberosa 1qt (Butterfly Weed)January 2, 2023
Dodecatheon meadia 1qt (Eastern Shooting Star)January 2, 2023
Dicentra cucullaria 1qt (Dutchman’s Breeches)
-Part Shade, Full Shade
-Creamy White Flowers in April, May
79 in stock
Dutchman’s Breeches is a graceful native woodland wildflower that blooms in earliest spring with arching stems of creamy white flowers that resemble pants, hanging with the ankles facing upward. The foliage is a deeply dissected blue-green color that remains close to the ground, only ever growing 6″ tall. They will grow in spreading colonies with distinct central crowns, so the ground is not covered uniformly. This makes Dutchman’s Breeches a great compliment to many other spring ephemerals and bulbs, and they are quite frost tolerant as well. They thrive in moist, rich, well-draining soils which is especially important over the winter months. The blooming period lasts about two to three weeks, and the foliage remains until early summer (with adequate shade and soil moisture) until going completely dormant until the next spring.
Many insects visit the early blooming flowers for nectar, mainly long-tongued bees. The seeds also spread around, often a good distance from the mother plants, with a lot of help from ants! The ants gather the fresh seeds and carry them back to their nests to eat the fleshy appendage attached to the seed coat (called elaiosomes.) The undamaged seeds are then discarded in their midden heaps, which are a perfectly rich and protected substrate for the seeds to germinate in. This mutualistic interaction helps many spring ephemerals to spread around the landscape, since most of their seeds are too heavy for wind transport and unviable if they get desiccated.
Growing and Propagating Wildflowers by William Cullina
Herbaceous Perennial Plants by Allan M. Armitage
Missouri Botanical Garden
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center