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HeatherHeath (calluna) is a low growing evergreen shrub with over 500 cultivars. It is a common feature of European moors. Has upright, but flexible branches with tiny overlapping leaves often with hairs that give them a gray cast.

Some of the little bell flowers never open from bud. Subtle variations in foliage, with flower colors from white, pink, purple, to red. Provides a year-round interest to the garden.

Heather prefers poor, acidic soil, but must have good drainage. Sandy soil amended with peat moss is excellent. Becomes leggy when grown under too much shade, but can't tolerate full sun or exposure to wind. Recommended for coastal locations with moderate winters and mild summers.

Mulch in the winter where snow cover is unreliable.

Heath is shallow rooted, so you have to be careful weeding around the plant so as to not damage the roots. After flowering, prune back the shoots. Propagate by layering. Hardy in zones 4 - 7.

  • a low-growing evergreen groundcover

  • 2' to 3' tall with an equivalent spread

  • branching is upright and thick mats are formed

  • old plants become irregular and untidy

  • generally dense and compact