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ARUNCUS dioicus

Image of Aruncus dioicus

Gerald L. Klingaman

Family

Rosaceae

Botanical Name

ARUNCUS dioicus

Plant Common Name

Bride's Feathers, Goat's Beard

General Description

A mound of ferny leaves and tall white plumes make goat's beard a lovely accent plant. It is an upright, tall perennial of woodlands in circumboreal regions-- native to eastern North America as well as Europe and across Siberia into eastern Asia.

The mid- to dark green leaves are large, and made up of many small oval leaflets that have teeth on their edges. Collectively they produce a lovely fern-like texture. In early and midsummer, tall stems tower above the leaves and produce creamy white male-gendered flowers or more dropping greenish white female flowers. Goat's beard is dioecious, meaning plants are either male or female in gender. In general, the male plants produce much showier plumes of flowers.

Grow goat's beard in average to moist soils in partial sun to full shade. In warmer summer regions, soils require more water when plants are growing; in cool summer areas full sun exposures are possible. Use it in the background of a woodland border or garden. In masses it is spectacular in bloom along a stream or pond shoreline. The flowers are great cut fresh or dried and used in arrangements.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    7 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 7

  • Sunset Zone

    A2, A3, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade, Full Shade

  • Height

    4'-6' / 1.2m - 1.8m

  • Width

    2'-4' / 0.6m - 1.2m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer

  • Native To

    North America, United States, Northeastern United States, Mid-Atlantic United States, Southeastern United States, North-Central United States, Central United States, Canada, Europe, Eastern Europe, Northern Europe, Western Europe, Russia/Siberia

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Summer

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Cutflower, Dried Flower/Everlasting, Feature Plant, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No