Bleeding hearts are shade-loving flowers that posses distinct characteristics in the fall. Some types continue to bloom in the spring, summer and fall and other types only bloom in the spring. The blooms are heart-shaped flowers that have a bell or tear-shape at the bottom. The foliage usually dies off in the fall for most bleeding hearts, but some types maintain full foliage throughout fall. The soil requirements are generally the same for all types; plant bleeding hearts in moist, well-drained, nutrient-rich soil. Most species grow best in rainy areas of the American Northwest and the East Coast, but bleeding hearts grow well in other parts of the U.S. as well.
Fringed Bleeding Heart
The fringed bleeding heart, also called dicentra eximia, produces pink blooms in May through August, but it can continue to bloom in the fall as long as the weather conditions are right. The foliage and the flowers usually maintain their vibrancy during the fall. The flowers are generally pink, red or white. This type of bleeding heart has bluish-green foliage and can grow to about 1 foot tall. Plant your fringed bleeding heart in well-drained, moist soil. This plant enjoys full shade to partial sun. Bleeding hearts usually don’t need watering unless you live in a dry area. These plants thrive in Oregon, Washington and other rainy areas across the country.
Old-Fashioned Bleeding Heart
Plant both pink-and-white and pure white old-fashioned bleeding hearts in your garden.
The old-fashioned bleeding heart, also called dicentra spectabilis, grows well throughout the fall, especially in rainy areas. This variety has long arching branches that display several rows of bleeding hearts at an angle. The flowers are deep pink and white, and the foliage is deep green. Some old-fashioned bleeding hearts produce pure white flowers as well. The foliage turns yellow and brown in the fall, and the flowers die off, but the deep pink flowers return every spring; it grows to 2 to 3 feet in height. Plant old fashioned bleeding hearts in well-drained, nutrient-rich, moist soils.
Langtrees Bleeding Heart
Langtrees beeding hearts, also called dicentra formosa, is yet another variety. This variety blooms throughout fall as long as the weather conditions remain cool, but not too cold. The plant also blooms off and on in the spring and summer. The flowers are light yellow or cream-colored vlooms and the foliage is deep green and fern-like. The flowers also grow side by side and in close clusters. Clusters usually form near the end of a branch. These flowers don’t produce the perfect heart-shaped flowers seen in other bleeding hearts. Langtrees bleeding hearts are a mix of heart and bell shapes.