Corydalis 'Berry Exciting'

Common Name: corydalis 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Papaveraceae
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 0.75 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 0.75 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: May to July
Bloom Description: Purple
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Leaf: Colorful


Grow in moist, humusy, well-drained soils in part shade to full shade. Plants prefer cool summer climates. If foliage significantly depreciates in hot summers, plants may be cut back. Plants are not reliably winter hardy throughout USDA Zone 5 where they should be planted in protected locations.

‘Berry Exciting’ is sterile and will not self-seed in the garden.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Corydalis is a genus of about 300 species of annuals, biennials or perennials from mostly north temperate areas.

Genus name comes from the Greek word korydalis meaning lark in reference to the resemblance of the plant’s floral spurs to the spurs of some larks.

‘Berry Exciting’ is a hybrid corydalis that features fern-like soft yellow foliage, contrasting purple flowers and a spreading habit. It originated from a tissue culture mutation from Corydalis shimienensis ‘Blackberry Wine’, and closely resembles ‘Blackberry Wine’ in many respects except for its distinctive yellow foliage. It typically grows in a mound to 12” tall and to 16” wide, with flower spikes rising slightly above the foliage to 13” tall. Tube-shaped flowers (each to 3/4” long) bloom from May to July. Flowers are pleasantly fragrant. Pinnately decompound, ternate leaves with ovate to rhomboid leaflets typically hold their yellow color well throughout the growing season. If foliage is cut back after bloom, a sparse rebloom later in the summer or early fall may occur. In cool summer climates, plants may bloom throughout the summer and into fall. U.S. Plant Patent PP18,917 was issued on June 10, 2008.


No serious insect or disease problems. Some susceptibility to aphids, mites and rust.


The yellow flowers are an excellent addition to shaded garden areas. Rock gardens or border fronts. At the base of large shrubs. Forms a nice ground cover in shaded woodland or cottage garden areas. Also reportedly performs well in hanging baskets and containers.