Content Detail

Leather bergenia is an evergreen perennial that is often planted in groups and used as a ground cover. It spreads slowly by short rhizomes. Pink to white flowers bloom in spring.

  • Family (English) Saxifrage
  • Family (botanic) Saxifragaceae
  • Tree or plant type Perennial, Ground cover
  • Native locale Non-native
  • Size range Medium plant (12-24 inches)
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 3, Zone 4, Zone 5 (Northern Illinois), Zone 6 (City of Chicago), Zone 7, Zone 8, Zone 9
  • Soil preference Moist, well-drained soil
  • Tolerances Alkaline soil, Dry sites, Occasional drought
  • Season of interest early winter, early spring, mid spring, late spring, early summer, midsummer, late summer, early fall, mid fall, late fall
  • Flower color and fragrance Pink
  • Shape or form Mounded, Upright
  • Growth rate Slow

Size and method of spreading: 

Leather bergenia can grow 12 to 18 inches high and each plant may spread out 12 inches. It is primarily a clump forming ground cover (perennial that can be planted closely together to provide the visual effect of a ground cover), but does have the ability to spread a little by short rhizomes.

Native geographic location and habitat:

It is native to Asia.

Leaf description:

The evergreen leaves arise from the base of the plant. They are thick and almost succulent, up to 12 inches long, with wavy edges. Harsh winters or winters with little snow cover may damage the evergreen foliage.

Flower description:

Small, pink flowers are borne on upright stems that rise slightly above the foliage in spring.

Fruit description:

The fruit are small dry capsules and not ornamentally important.

Plant care:

Leather bergenia prefers full sun to partial shade. It is tolerant of a variety of soils, but will perform best in moist, well-drained soil. Harsh winters or winters with little snow cover may damage the evergreen foliage to the point that leaves may need to be trimmed off. 

List of pests, diseases, and tolerances:

There are no common serious pests for this plant, although slug damage and leaf spots can occur. It is resistant to deer.


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