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Focus on Epimedium

Common name: barrenwort


Epimedium: an enchanting woodland addition!

This genus is an ever-growing family of highly prized perennials. Epimedium is admired for its charming flowers that embellish difficult areas of the garden with spring interest. Though modest from a distance, up close these flowers command attention. Petite star-shaped flowers delicately dangle from slim stems, poised gracefully above ornamental foliage. Heart-shaped leaves offer texture and varying colours throughout the seasons. Undemanding yet rewarding, Epimedium oozes subtle beauty and sophisticated elegance.

Care Notes

The trick to success with Epimedium is to replicate its natural habitat, considering sunlight and moisture levels. Naturally found in woodland, this genus is at home in shady or partially shady areas, thriving in dappled shade. Well suited to acidic soils, they make excellent ground cover and do well in sheltered locations. Some prefer a moist, but well drained soil, while others can be planted in drier conditions under shrubs or trees.

To keep Epimediums happy, feed them with a regular mulch of compost or leaf mould. For the best foliage display, cut back old leaves before the flowers bloom.

Our Favourite Epimediums

This delightful Epimedium features heart-shaped leaves, often blushed with a lovely red venation (the visible vein patterning on leaves). Sprays of two-tone yellow flowers bloom from mid to late spring, carried on wiry stems above the clump-forming foliage. This variety is particularly prized amongst gardeners for its capability to thrive in dry shade under trees. Alternatively, plant this highly tolerant specimen at the front of a border to enjoy its exquisite blooms up close.

Tolerating difficult shady areas of the garden, this award-winning, evergreen perennial is the perfect woodland plant. Red-flushed young leaves mature to a glossy green, turning reddish-brown in autumn. A froth of tiny crimson and creamy-yellow flowers emerge in late spring. Use as tough and durable ground cover or as an edge for shady beds and borders.


Enhance your garden with Epimedium and you won’t be disappointed.

Happy Gardening!