Hardiness: USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 °C (-20 °F) USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 °C (-15 °F) USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 °C (-10 °F) USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 °C (-5 °F) USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 °C (0 °F) USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 °C (5 °F) USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 °C (10 °F) USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F) USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F) USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F) USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F) USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F) USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Sun Exposure: Sun to Partial Shade
Danger: Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling
Bloom Color: Pink Purple White/Near White
Bloom Time: Late Spring/Early Summer Mid Summer
Foliage: Herbaceous Shiny/Glossy-Textured
Other details: Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Soil pH requirements: 6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic) 6.6 to 7.5 (neutral) 7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
Patent Information: Non-patented
Propagation Methods: From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse From seed; sow indoors before last frost From seed; direct sow after last frost
Seed Collecting: Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
On Jun 15, 2011, janaestone from (Di) Seven Mile, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:
Absolutely beautiful, unique plant. The flowers are a very pretty dusky purple with white. This plant has survived extremely cold winters here with no problem. I've been told this is a shade plant but I have three of them in full sun in different parts of my yard and I've never had any problems with them. The only it hates is being moved. It wilts almost immediately upon being taken out of the ground and will appear dead until the following spring. Once I moved mine it took two years before it bloomed again. It is definitely a 'showcase' plant as it will be the center of attention once it blooms!
On Oct 4, 2005, lmelling from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:
I was given several starts of this plant 2 years ago and told that it was A.'Mollis'. Of course I found out that it is actually A. 'spinosus'. Neither type of Acanthus, according to plant guide I have, can grow in our zone, however, it grows here fine and at several friends' homes as well. I had my first bloom this July.
Ours is planted in our shade garden under white pines. The shelter keeps this area a little warmer in winter and may be the reason it survives for us here. According to an encylcopedia of plants the zone for this type (and A.'mollis' as well), is zone 7-10. Of course, because of the spines, this plant and it's blooms are quite deer resistant!
Blooms can be dried by hanging upside down and keep quite well for a year or so. Cut at the height of flowering for best results. Be careful when handling because of the spines!
On Apr 2, 2005, SalmonMe from Springboro, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:
Likes morning sun in zone 6. Well-draining soil is of high importance, and may need a winter mulching in cooler zones. Divide in spring every 5 years or so to maintain vigor. 'Spinossisimus' is very spiny and unpleasant to handle, but other forms are much less so.
On Aug 1, 2002, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:
Bear's Breeches is a relatively uncommon shade perennial that is becoming increasingly available in the nursery trade, prized for its large, arching, bold-textured foliage, unusual floral spikes, and ability to cover large areas of ground when mature.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
, (2 reports) Clovis, California Boise, Idaho Washington, Illinois Lenexa, Kansas Arundel, Maine Kemp Mill, Maryland Leeds, Massachusetts South Deerfield, Massachusetts Ludington, Michigan Boone, North Carolina Greenville, North Carolina Bexley, Ohio Blue Ash, Ohio New Miami, Ohio Springboro, Ohio Clackamas, Oregon East Norriton, Pennsylvania Haverford, Pennsylvania Laflin, Pennsylvania Donna, Texas Leesburg, Virginia Cross Lanes, West Virginia