Jupiter's Beard, Keys to Heaven, Red Valerian 'Coccineus'

Centranthus ruber

Family: Caprifoliaceae (cap-ree-foh-lee-AY-see-ee) (Info) (cap-ree-foh-lee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Centranthus (sen-TRAN-thus) (Info)
Species: ruber (ROO-ber) (Info)
Cultivar: Coccineus
View this plant in a garden



Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:



24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


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)

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round in hardiness zone


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Magenta (pink-purple)


Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:


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

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:


Vincent, Alabama

Glen Avon, California

Merced, California

Pedley, California

Rubidoux, California

Salinas, California

Sunnyslope, California

Pueblo, Colorado

Ellabell, Georgia

Payette, Idaho

Barbourville, Kentucky

Berea, Kentucky

Saginaw, Michigan

Hopkins, Minnesota

Alamogordo, New Mexico

Williamsburg, Ohio

Chiloquin, Oregon

Jacksonville, Oregon

Martinsburg, Pennsylvania

Norristown, Pennsylvania

Knoxville, Tennessee

Chesapeake, Virginia

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 29, 2014, peejay12 from Porthleven, Helston, Cornwall,
United Kingdom (Zone 9b) wrote:

This plant can be seen growing on walls everywhere in Cornwall and the milder counties. The naturalised plants come in white red or pink (the commonest colour). I'm hoping to swamp the weeds by naturalising the red form everywhere.


On May 24, 2010, ms_greenjeans from Hopkins, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

I'm in zone 4a and have grown this plant for three years in a hot, dry sunny area. It requires virtually no care and blooms from early June to fall if deadheaded. If it gets floppy I cut it back and it just fills out and blooms more. This spring I tried pinching back the stems and it seems rounder and fuller. The flowers are great for cutting too. So far it seems well-behaved and has just stayed where I put it.
Update 2011 -- I have planted a few more of these, and they seem to perform well no matter where they are. The foliage always looks great, it blooms continuously, and every kind of pest seems to leave it alone. I can't figure out why you don't see this everywhere.


On Apr 29, 2008, Lily_love from Central, AL (Zone 7b) wrote:

I purchased this plant from a local Botanical Plant Sale, the plant is forming a small bud. I'll post more pics. as the plant developes in my perennial garden.