Palace Purple Overexposed! (Warning...this is scary)

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

This is what happens when Palace Purple sits in the baking sun all day long with no shade whatsoever (and no this isn't in my garden,lol).
On Saturday, DH and I went for one of our mini-hikes in Goderich, ON. We always stop to visit the lighthouse that the area is known for and this year the nearby owners of a B & B decided to plant hostas, heucheras and zinnias around a monument of sorts. The sun beats down from various angles throughout the day because it's so open in this spot. Needless to say, the zinnias were loving it but the poor hostas and heuchs were frying something terrible. Purple Palace was beyond recognition and if it wasn't for the tags, I'd never of known for certain who these poor souls were. I believe the area to be zone 5a or b.
I wanted to knock on the door of the B & B and tell them but then I figured some people might take offense on being told how to raise their kids.

Thumbnail by Erynne
Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

For comparison purposes, I found a photo of my P.P. from May of this year. She is alot bigger now and has more colour.....reminds me to get out and take more pics. Maybe tomorrow morning.

Thumbnail by Erynne
Gravois Mills, MO(Zone 6a)

Erynne-------I have seen Palace Purple burn up down here but it is not in the color of that one. They turn brown on the edges here. It is hard to find the right spot to plant Heuchera, Heucherella and Tairrella down here in Zones 5 and down. I know that even morning sun can be to much if your temperature is going into the 90s and it stay hot at night. The last 4 or 5 days we had 90+ and it has still been up in the 80s at midnight. I am having a very hard time placing a couple that need sun to color up real well. One is stoplight. I water my heuchera twice everyday in the heat wave we just went thru. They actually take more water than the hosta do. I read where they were suppose to be kept WET but well drained. In my garden in a heat wave it mean watering twice a day. The hosta do not use that much water they seem to store it like a camel in those crowns. I am convinced a mature hosta does that. Yet they still get one watering almost daily. Depends on what they tell me( sounds nuts to talk to hosta huh) by the attitude of the leaves.

This message was edited Jul 5, 2006 8:13 AM

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

I totally agree with you Oz; it is hard to find the exact placement in your own garden for some of these heuchs. That heuch in the first picture, gets severe south/west exposure and it looks like they keep the area very well watered. We've been having really high temps combined with terrible humidity and some heuchs are starting to protest in my garden. There's no way I can water twice a day because of work but I try really hard to make sure I do a good job when I get home. The hostas though, HA! I don't think anything bothers them too much. They always look happy as larks, lol. I talk to my hosta all the time even though I don't mean to talk to plants but it just sorta happens somehow ;)

Whidbey Island, WA(Zone 7a)

Omigosh - I just went outside to check on my Palace Purple, but it apparently is shaded enough by other plants and is okay!!

Thanks for sharing, though - really is something we need to be aware of. I have a Dolce Key Lime Pie, 3 Marmalades and 3 Creme Brulees that are not appreciating the sunny spot they are in so will be moving them soon.

Ozarkian, I talk to ALL my plants (and my cats, and sometimes embarrassingly find myself talking to my statuary - especially the ones that are children, but also the angels, fairies, and frogs . . . oh, and the bunnies and the pig!).

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

LMAO! You just went outside right now Murmur? Oh my, I didn't mean to scare ya that bad, hehe. Though when I got home that day, the first thing I did was check mine.
I've just never saw a Palace Purple look like this.....sorta reptilian like and it felt funny too! The B & B had more planted directly on their own property (30 feet from the monument) but those looked fine because their were enough trees to cast shade. They must've got them on sale because I swear there were 30 PP between the house and the monument and everyone of them had the plastic tag in the ground nearby. Funniest thing I ever saw.....I guess they didn't want to forget it was Palace Purple :)

Whidbey Island, WA(Zone 7a)

Yup. I'm not kidding, Erynne, I literally went right outside to check mine!!

I like PP, but even on a huge sale don't think I would buy 30 of them!!! LOL I sure do need to rearrange my Heucheras, though - I thought the garden I put the majority of them in got more shade than it does (don't quite know where I get these ideas sometimes) so I need to move them. I have a couple gardens that will work, but that means I have to move some things there, too! Sigh . . . it goes on and on (thank goodness - what would I do without plants to move, plans to make, etc.??)

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

No I don't think I'd want that many of them either,lol. I may buy one or two more though since they seem to be good performers in my garden.
I too have to move some of my heuchs around and it frustrates me to no end to have to do it. Also, I find my heuchs can get "lost" in the mix out there so I'm trying to find more front & center spots for them or use other plants to highlight them. Recently, I put Hakone Grass together with Heuchera Dale's Strain and Dolce Licorice. The green in Dale's Strain leaves picks up the green in the Hakone Grass and it's darker veination matches the Dolce Licorice. I think it works! True, this is never ending.

Gravois Mills, MO(Zone 6a)

Eynne---- It is very easy to devide Palce Purple. I had a big pile of them this past winter when I cut back real severly on all of those we got here.

Delhi, IA

Best I watch my plants. Warm night are coming for us. Thanks.

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

Oz, heuchs seem easy to divide like hosta though I haven't tried it yet. PP is pretty cheap in these parts compared to other heucheras so it's pretty worth it to buy more. The only concern I have is if they get that woody look. Would I "have" to divide then to keep the vigor? So many questions eh?


Gravois Mills, MO(Zone 6a)

Erynne---- I do not like the woody look either. I cut mine back to nubs last winter they are now really pretty. Full and mounded.

Central, WI(Zone 4a)

I read somewhere that one should split their Heuchs every 3-4 years. I haven't don that with my PP and it's still looking good. IN fact, this year is the best it's ever looked. It has shot out some babies that I will be pulling up.

re Placement-They certainly let you know when they are not happy. I moved my Amber Waves 3 times before I found a spot that it likes. Have Tiarella Heronswood Mist that I have moved once,,,,need to move it again,,,,stinkers.

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

Lol Kelly, I think I've moved all my heuchs at least once to find their "happy" place. The heuchs that I find do the best and the least finicky are my PP, Marmalade, Chocolate Ruffles and Crimson Curls.

Central, WI(Zone 4a)

They can be persnickety little things. I think I've moved all of mine at least once also,,,,no, I take that back. There are about 5 that I haven't and out of those, I prolly should move 1 of them. Trying to figure out where that Heronswood Mist would maybe be happy. Poor little thing only has a few leaves left on it,,,LOL

Gravois Mills, MO(Zone 6a)

I am going to set back on my Heuchera. Some have not done that well around here for the most part. The heat is the thing I am sure since some have mountain plants parentage way back in their lines. Others take the heat and even the hot sun. Palace Purple is one of them and so is Dolce Licorice. Matter of fact I have had better luck with all my Dolce plants. I have never had a problem with a Heucherilla are a Tiarrella.

Davenport, IA(Zone 5a)

Anybody in zone 5 plant Papace Purple in Patio Pots? I think they're hardy to zn3 aren't they?
I have several zone 3 hostas that stay in Patio Pots for years, and come back great each year, with no pampering.
I'd appreciate any unput. OZ? What'cha think?

Gravois Mills, MO(Zone 6a)

I have a stoplight Heucherella in a pot. I see no reason they would not work in a patio pot. They are as tough as anything else in these zones. you should see the abuse I have given Palace purple and they just keep coming back.

Central, WI(Zone 4a)


LOL,,,Your poor Palace Purples. Me thinks you have finally gained a wee bit of admiration for them once you hacked them all the way off and they came back thicker and more lush.

Have never tried Heuch's or Hostas in pots. I was going to this year, but as Fall approaches, I too scawed,,,LOL I don't want to lose any of them. Guess I could try it with ones that I dont' care if I lose, just to see what happens.

Gravois Mills, MO(Zone 6a)

Kelly---- I do not think you have to worry about loosing them to muchjust put the pots in a protected area in the winter are else under the house.

Central, WI(Zone 4a)

I could put them on the South side of the house. Right next to the house. It stays warmer there, I figure prolly zone 5-6.

Lewisburg, KY(Zone 6a)

What is a good one that will take part sun? I have tried P. Palace. Key Lime Pie does OK but not great. Stoplight is in partial light but it is increasing like I hoped it would. Silver Scrolls is still pretty.

Columbus, OH(Zone 6a)

Hello all! I am new to this site. I really like Heucheras, (I like to call them Coral Bells, sounds prettier I think) I have several varieties that I just divided. I read an old post that Erynne wrote about the Purple Palace at the B&B that was suffering because it's owners put it in too much sun. She felt that it would have been improper to inform them of the plants condition and requirements. I myself would've tried to talk to them about the plant. I don't think they would have thought she was out of line. I think they would have welcomed the advice. I have seen plants in trouble for the same reason at other places (Wally World, Krogers in the spring, eating spots, neighbors yards), and I told them about the plant(s), and they were so happy that I did because they didn't have a clue as to why the plant was doing so badly. So...that's my thoughts.

(Zone 5b)

I agree with sdd...there comes a point in your life (I think I'm very nearly there) that you feel the 'need' to speak your mind and 'inform' the masses on whatever happens to cross it at any given time.

That aside, why is there a harder time in >Z5 for heucheras? I am also in Z5...right near the Z6 line, and I don't think I've had 'issues' with them. I've lost a couple tiny ones, but the others that I've purchased as larger plants seem to like where they are (key lime is in full sun, and Plum Pudding, Obsidian, and Purple Palace are liking their homes under the shade trees on the stone wall separating our property from the next guy's.

I guess my question is: Should I be more concerned than I am?

Orangeville, ON(Zone 4b)

Yikes, I forgot about this thread.
I've always been one to keep quiet about things and bite my tongue. The times I didn't, I got myself in trouble,lol. Maybe a little talk with those Heuchera owners wouldn't be bad a thing.....gardeners aren't known to be violent right, haha!

I've noticed that too with my heucheras; the bigger they are when I initially plant them, the better they seem to do henceforth.
I have the same heucheras as yourself birdsnblooms, and they are great performers. Obsidian was the only one to trouble me at first because of too much sun and it looked like crap for so long last year. This year, it's doing well in deeper shade. I think Dolce Licorice is better than Obsidian though.

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