Steps To Grow Coral Bells In Containers

Steps To Grow Coral Bells In Containers

Coral bells, also called Heurecha or Alumroot, are a popular perennial foliage plant with hundreds of types to choose from and new releases every year. The plants are native to North America and grow in spherical mounds with a woody rootstock or crown at the base and tiny bell-shaped flowers on tall stalks in the spring and early summer.

The nectar-rich blossoms attract hummingbirds and butterflies and make attractive cut flowers. Depending on the temperature, their leaves are spherical, lobed, hairy, and evergreen or semi-evergreen. Aside from the conventional green-leaved coral bells, new types come in purple, rose, lime green, gold, and other colours.

Coral bells grow at a moderate rate and are ideal for woodlands, rock gardens, pots, borders, and ground covers when planted in late fall or early spring.

Steps To Grow Coral Bells In Containers

Cultural Conditions

Many difficulties with coral bells can be avoided or exacerbated by how they are cared for. Bacterial infections are more common in humidified environments with poor air circulation, poor soil drainage, and stressed plants. Plant coral bells in a location with well-draining soil and water them in the morning to keep the plants from becoming overly damp.

If the plants are exposed to direct sunlight during the day, they may become sunburned, so find a location with morning sun and afternoon shade. Avoid plants that are too dense, as this restricts air circulation. To avoid insect and disease concerns, keep the soil around your plants clean of debris.

Colours And Characteristics

Today's garden hybrids come in a wide range of colours, with some featuring marbled patterns, dramatic veining, silvery overlays, and ruffled edges. Tiny bell-shaped flowers swaying on tall, wispy stems peak above the greenery.

The nectar-rich blossoms are a good source of food for butterflies and hummingbirds.

Many cultivars have great heat, drought, and humidity tolerance.

The foliage changes colour throughout the growing season and retains its colour throughout the winter, providing year-round interest. Some cultivars even provide an “extra side” by displaying contrasting colours on the top and bottom of the leaves.

Best Coral Bells

Before starting to grow coral bells in containers we will need to know about some of the popular varieties.

Blackberry Ice Coral Bells

Blackberry Ice Coral Bells

The famous heat-tolerant Dolce line includes this reddish-purple variation. Black veining can be seen in the leaves if you look closely. While some heucheras bloom in the spring, this one blooms in the summer and has lovely white blossoms. Perfect for zones 4-9.

Gold Zebra Coral Bells

The Gold Zebra Coral Bells are perfect for zones 4-9. You get two stunning foliage colors for the price of one with this whimsically titled heuchera. Its beautiful yellow leaves have dark crimson cores and are scalloped at the margins. During testing in hot, humid Oklahoma summers, Gold Zebra fared admirably. Make sure it gets at least some shade when you plant it.

Berry Smoothie Coral Bells

Berry Smoothie Coral Bells

The leaf begins out rose-pink, but it darkens to a purplish hue as the summer progresses. The light pink blossoms appear in late spring, and if you keep deadheading them throughout the summer, you should have flowers all summer. Plants should be grown in partial shade and kept thoroughly hydrated, especially while they're just getting started. They are perfect for zones 4-8.

Citronelle Coral Bells

Citronelle Coral Bells

If your plants must be tolerant of heat, this is one of the best coral bells for you. The lime-green foliage alone is eye-catching. For optimal results, grow this one in moderate shade. Perfect for zones 4-8.

Caramel Coral Bells

Caramel Coral Bells

Perfect for zones 4-9. Here's another one that can take the heat in the summer! It can withstand direct sunlight, but it will thrive with shaded relief and adequate watering, especially in the afternoon. Look for beautiful pink blossoms springing up from the rich caramel foliage around midsummer.

Peppermint Spice Coral Bells

With its stunning rose-pink blossoms, what many think of when they think of heucheras, and silvery-green foliage, many gardeners consider Peppermint Spice to be the ideal coral bell variety. Flowers will bloom in the summer, and plants will reach a height of 8-10 inches. Perfect for zones 4-9.

Midnight Rose Coral Bells

Midnight Rose Coral Bells

The variety is also perfect for zones 4-9. Are you a fan of dramatic foliage? You can't go wrong with this one's black foliage. They start out dark, with little pink flecks that grow larger and whiter as the season progresses. This cultivar has a low, mounding growth habit at only 10 inches tall.

Can-Can Coral Bells

If you're still undecided about which Heuchera variety to choose, the Can-Can variety can pique your interest. With the help of the ruffled leaves, this one has a mystic effect thanks to its dark purple foliage, which adds a gratifying amount of texture. The Heuchera Can Can is best suited to regions of your garden that are somewhat shaded. When the leaves are exposed to the light, they appear even more dazzling, but they still require shelter from the hot afternoon heat.

Green Spice Coral Bells

Green Spice Coral Bells

Another heuchera with incredibly interesting veined leaf and silvery flashes. The veins take on a purple hue in colder conditions. Late spring or early summer will see the appearance of the little white flowers. Perfect for zones 4-9.

Apple Crisp Coral Bells

Apple Crisp Coral Bells

There are a few Heuchera dwarf types out there that are well worth your time. Apple Crisp is one among them, and it makes a dramatic visual impression in small urban gardens. Although it lacks the flashy leaves that you'd anticipate from a Heuchera plant, the little green foliage contrasts nicely with the many white flower wands. The green leaves have a little silver tinge to them, which reminds me of larger Heucheras.

There are a few Heuchera dwarf types out there that are well worth your time. Apple Crisp is one among them, and it makes a dramatic visual impression in small urban gardens. Although it lacks the flashy leaves that you'd anticipate from a Heuchera plant, the little green foliage contrasts nicely with the many white flower wands. The green leaves have a little silver tinge to them, which reminds me of larger Heucheras.

Amber Waves Coral Bells

Amber Waves Coral Bells

This one is a prizewinner, having won an award for “best new plant” in 2001, and it's easy to understand why. Copper foliage, ruffled leaves, pink buds, and cream-coloured blossoms are all present. Perfect for zones 3-8.

Hollywood Coral Bells

Most people grow heuchera for the leaves, but Hollywood proves that the flowers are also worthy of praise. Coral bells attract hummingbirds, and the brilliant red flowers of this one will attract them to your yard. The foliage is quite attractive, having dark green leaves with a hint of silver and scalloped edges. Perfect for zones 3-9.

Mint Julep Coral Bells

Mint Julep can be a good choice if you want a Heuchera variety that doesn't stand out too much in the garden. It doesn't have spectacular foliage, but it has a great texture that may be used to highlight any zone in the garden. The Heuchera Mint Julep's lime-green foliage can give a splash of colour, especially when coupled with the white blooms that bloom during the summer.

As the decorative plant grows older, it begins to develop more noticeable veining, which is a characteristic of Heuchera plants. This Heuchera is best suited to fully shaded parts of your garden. It's a versatile species that may be grown in dense clusters and used for a number of aesthetic reasons.

Bronze Wave Coral Bells

Bronze Wave Coral Bells

With its bronze-green foliage type, the Heuchera Bronze Wave can enhance the appearance of any gloomy garden location, as its name suggests. When you consider the purple-brown tones beneath the leaves, this cultivar has a wonderful color blend. This Heuchera has a lot of diversity in comparison to other Heucheras. The Heuchera Bronze Wave can grow strongly with thick and glossy leaves once established in ideal flourishing conditions.

While the small white blooms produced by this ornamental plant aren't particularly attractive on their own, when a great number of them bloom, they gain in aesthetic value. The full floral arrangement can serve as a strong visual accent to the foliage's stiff construction. If you keep this kind in direct sunlight, it can bleach and burn. To appreciate the full splendor of this Heuchera's coppery leaves, put it in a shady location.

Coral Bells In Containers

Let’s start to grow coral bells in containers:

Soil

Soil

Coral Bells thrive in soil rich in organic matter and high organic matter content. To make healthy soil, add compost or manure. Coral Bells prefer to dry out between waterings; therefore, well-draining soil is required. You can also use good quality all-purpose potting soil for container-grown coral bells.

When you first put them up, add a half-inch layer of compost on top of the dirt. Make sure the plant's crown isn't covered with soil or compost.

Containers

Containers

Coral bells thrive in containers. Simply ensure that the bottom of the container has a hole through which the extra water may drain. If you want them to grow back the next year, put them in the landscape in the early fall. They can be overwintered in containers if you garden in zones 6b or warmer.

Grow Coral Bells From Seed

Grow Coral Bells From Seed

Coral bells can be grown from seed, however, hybrids must be grown from divisions if you want plants that resemble the parent. When starting seed, sprinkle it on the soil's surface in late fall or early spring, but don't cover it because seeds require light to germinate. You can also start seeds indoors a few months before transplanting them. It takes two to eight weeks for coral bells seeds to germinate.

Harden off the plants for 10 days after they've been established, then transplant the seedlings outside once all risk of frost has passed. After the risk of frost has gone, you can plant container-grown coral bells at any time. Other than some relief from the intense heat and rich, well-draining soil, keep them well-watered the first year.

Sunlight

Sunlight

Coral bells thrive in partial shade, which is especially beneficial in hotter areas. If they're kept in direct sunlight, their color will fade, and too much light will cause their leaves to sear. Keep in mind that coral bells planted in moist shade are susceptible to fungal diseases; if your plants develop difficulties, it's advisable to relocate them to a drier location.

Watering

Watering

Water Coral Bells in planters more frequently than plants in the ground, but otherwise, they require the same care. Coral bells like soil that is continuously moist but not wet. They thrive when given an inch of water each week from rainfall and hand watering, as do most plants. If your container is unglazed, or if it's in a sunny place, the pot may heat up and dry up the soil; they'll need additional water.

Drench the soil until water runs through the drainage holes until the top few inches are dry to the touch. Rain and dryness will affect the watering schedule, so keep an eye on it and make adjustments as needed.

Fertilizer

Slow-release fertilizer like compost is the best choice because coral bells aren't heavy feeders. Apply a half-strength solution of a water-soluble fertilizer throughout the growing season every six weeks.

On the other hand, plants grown in containers require more regular fertilization since the nutrients in the soil are leached away due to constant soaking. If you prefer, apply a water-soluble fertilizer every other week during the growing season to keep your Coral Bells looking their best. When the plant is dormant during the winter, it is unnecessary to fertilize Coral Bells.

Humidity and Temperature

The majority of coral bells are hardy in USDA hardiness zones four through eight, though specific hardiness varies per variety. Coral bells crowns can stretch above the soil line in chilly places during the winter. Winter mulching will help prevent the plants from being pushed up by the freezing/thawing cycle, and you should check for exposed roots on a regular basis.

Pruning

Coral bells are low-maintenance plants, however, after flowering, you can cut back the entire flower stem to redirect the plant's energy to developing more leaves. Coral bells are short-lived perennials that need to be divided every three to five years in the early spring or fall to stay healthy. Cut back the leaves if they become ragged-looking, especially after the winter, and new growth should fill in fast.

Winter Care

Coral Bells are perennials that can make it through the winter with a bit of support. If a potted plant is left outside, the roots will not have enough protection and succumb to cold damage. The roots will be insulated and protected over the winter by placing the plant in the ground and mulching it.

If you live in a region where temperatures often drop below freezing, you can bring your container inside for the winter to avoid cracking. The plant will overwinter safely if the pot is moved indoors.

The potted Coral Bells can be relocated into a garage or shed and left to fall dormant for the winter, or you can bring it into your home and cultivate it as a houseplant. Because most coral bells are evergreen, they will require some light throughout the year for photosynthesis. Put your pots in a shed with a window or an unheated garage.

The plants will go dormant, but they will still require watering once a month to avoid drying out.

If the container is too large to move, wrap it with insulation in the fall to keep the temperature more stable and lessen the chances of cracking.

If you don't have access to a garage or shed, dig a hole deep enough for the container's top to be level with the earth, then backfill it. Your coral bell in a pot will thrive as if it were planted in your garden rather than in a container.

Pests And Diseases

Powdery mildew, which appears as a white, powdery growth on the leaves, shoots, and occasionally the flowers, is a common problem for coral bells. Bacterial infections can cause brown stains on the foliage of coral bells. Psuedomonas causes leave to become irregularly shaped and show as reddish-brown patches.

Yellow rings, or halos, form around little brown dots on the leaves of Xanthomonas. Larger brown patches are caused by botrytis. Coral bells can also get rusted. Though not always harmful, dark patches on the upper surfaces of the leaves with orange splotches on the undersides can be ugly.

Strawberry and black vine weevils are the most prevalent pests of coral bells. Adult weevils eat plant leaves and leave little holes in them. Although this damage isn't always harmful to the plant, it can be ugly. Around the coral bells, female weevils lay their eggs in plant debris. The weevil's larval stage is off-white in appearance and feeds on the roots of coral bells, which can kill the plant's above-ground components.

Design Ideas

Design Ideas

  • Coral bells can be used in woodland and rock gardens, as well as semi-shaded borders. Because of their tolerance for shade, they make excellent shrub understory plants.
  • Plant in huge clusters to create an eye-catching evergreen groundcover and to bring the leaf's colour to life on a larger scale. The visibility of the floral arrangements is further improved by mass plantings.
  • Mix them with contrasting lacy-leaved, shade-loving plants like ferns and astilbes to provide textural interest.
  • Use as a bright accent in container arrangements or as an interesting houseplant. Purple-leaved cultivars are a superb substitute for beautiful cabbage and kale in fall container designs.
  • Start your plants in containers that you can move around the garden until you discover the sun-shade combination that gives you the optimum foliage colour and performance.

Conclusion

Hope all tips to grow coral bells in containers will be helpful for you. Feel free to comment here if you face any problems at the time to grow coral bells in containers.

I trust you enjoyed this article on the Steps To Grow Coral Bells In Containers. Please stay tuned for more blog posts to come shortly. Take care!

JeannetteZ

 

 

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