Arabis alpina subsp. caucasica

Tried and Trouble-free Recommended by 2 Professionals
Common Name: mountain rockcress
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Brassicaceae
Native Range: Southern Europe
Zone: 4 to 7
Height: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: April to May
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium
Flower: Showy, Good Cut
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil


Grow in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun. Good drainage is particularly important. Cut back plants after flowering to promote denser foliage and to prevent plants from taking on a straggly appearance with the onset of summer heat. Intolerant of high heat and humidity, particularly in areas south of Zone 7 where foliage tends to decline considerably in summer and plant tend to be short-lived.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Rock cress forms loose spreading rosettes of small, grayish-green leaves. In early spring, fragrant, four-petaled, white, 1/2" flowers borne on elongating racemes extend above and cover the foliage. Plant is typically 8-12" tall when in flower, but otherwise is a sprawling mat of foliage up to 6" high.


No serious insect or disease problems. Some susceptibility to mildew, rust and aphids. Wet soils in winter can cause root rot.

Garden Uses

Best when massed as a ground cover in rock gardens, on slopes or cascading over a stone wall. May also be used in the border front as an edging plant. A good compliment to early spring bulbs such as Narcissus.