Epimedium perralderianum
Common Name: bishop's hat
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Berberidaceae
Native Range: Northern Africa
Zone: 5 to 9
Height: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 0.75 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: April
Bloom Description: Yellow
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Ground Cover, Naturalize
Flower: Showy
Tolerate: Rabbit, Deer, Drought, Heavy Shade, Erosion, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil

Culture

Easily grown in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils in part shade to full shade. Prefers loose, organically rich loams with even moisture in part shade. Tolerates drought once established. For growing as a ground cover, site starter plants to 12” apart. Plants are evergreen to semi-evergreen. In the St. Louis area, it is best to cut back foliage in early spring.

Noteworthy Characteristics

This epimedium is native to mountain woodland areas in Algeria. It is a rhizomatous, clump-forming perennial that typically grows 6-10” tall spreading to 16” wide or more. It forms an attractive ground cover for shady areas, being particularly noted for its yellow spring flowers and attractive foliage. Each plant forms a spreading mound of compound leaves on wiry stems, with each leaf containing three serrate leaflets (to 3” long). Leaves are bronze with light green marbling in spring, gradually turning green for the remainder of the growing season. Bright yellow flowers (to 3/4” wide) with short bronze spurs bloom in spring on stems slightly above the foliage. Epimediums have a number of common names, including barrenwort, bishop’s hat, bishop’s mitre or fairy wings. Specific epithet honors French naturalist Henri Rene le Tourneux de la Perraudiere (1831-1861).

Problems

No serious insect or disease problems.

Garden Uses

Small area ground cover or edger for shady areas. Mass in woodland gardens, wild gardens or naturalized areas. Also effective in partially shaded areas of rock gardens and border fronts and foundations. Grows well under trees. Edger for paths and walkways.