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Setting up a wildlife garden

Plants for butterflies

Plants for bees

Plants for hummingbirds

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Hepatica acutiloba (Sharp-leaved Hepatica)
Hepatica acutiloba

Zone: 3 to 9

Soil: Sand to loam

Light:part sun to shade

Bloom colour: white to purple

Bloom period: early to mid-spring

Height: 3 - 6 inches

Moisture: moist in spring

Attracts: Bees, syrphid flies

Notes: Sharp-leaved Hepatica is native to Eastern half of Canada and the United states. It can be found in woodlands and along the woodland edge. It flowers for a few weeks in the middle of spring and is one of the first plants to emerge. This plant is good for the front of a shady border where it should be planted en masse to show off its beautiful flowers and to attract pollinators. Anything less than 9 - 11 specimens will go unnoticed.

This plant can also be grown in rock gardens, but the soil needs to be loamy and moist to keep the leaves in good condition. Sunnier locations must be matched with more moisture. It has thicker and waxier leaves that can remain in good condition for most of the year

At this time, the ability of this plant to attract pollinators remains unassessed. With its interesting leaves and flowers that are quite large given it only grows 6 inches high, one has to wonder why this is not planted more often in suburban gardens. It is just as good as any box store bulb plant. Be careful to buy the native plant as the similar Eurasian species is also sold in nurseries


Hepatica acutiloba has pointed  leaves