Pulmonaria, also known as Lungwort

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Lawn & Garden

Pulmonarias, commonly referred to as lungworts, are perennials that thrive in moist soil. Take a look at more pictures of perennial flowers.

Lungworts are perennials that bloom early in spring and have striking foliage throughout the year. The leaves grow in a basal rosette and some varieties have silver-white markings. The flowers can be pink or blue and may even start off pink before turning blue, resulting in both colors appearing on the same plant.

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How to grow: While these plants can survive in poor soil, they do best when grown in rich, moist garden soil in partial to full shade. Once established, they require very little maintenance. Simply remove damaged leaves and transplant if they become overcrowded.

Propagation: Divide in the fall or grow from seed.

Uses: Lungworts are ideal for shade gardens, wild gardens, and as ground covers. They can also be used on sloping ground shaded by trees, which is often a difficult site for growing most other plants.

Related species: Pulmonaria angustifolia Azurea is a European plant with green leaves that produces bright blue flowers. P. saccharata and P. longifolia have silver markings on their leaves. P. saccharata Berries and Cream has striking silver foliage with forest green veins and edges.

Scientific name: Pulmonaria officinalis

Want to learn more? Check out:

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1. What is Pulmonaria?

Pulmonaria, also known as Lungwort, is a genus of flowering plants in the Boraginaceae family. They are native to Europe and Western Asia and are commonly grown for their attractive foliage and spring-blooming flowers.

2. What are the characteristics of Pulmonaria?

Pulmonaria plants are herbaceous perennials that grow up to 12-18 inches tall. They have hairy leaves with distinct silver or white spots and produce clusters of tubular flowers that are usually pink or blue in color. They prefer moist, well-drained soils and partial shade.

3. What are the benefits of growing Pulmonaria?

Pulmonaria plants are low-maintenance and can add interest to shady areas of the garden. They are also attractive to pollinators, such as bees and butterflies. In addition, some varieties of Pulmonaria have medicinal properties and have been used to treat respiratory ailments for centuries.

4. How do I care for Pulmonaria plants?

Pulmonaria plants prefer moist soils and partial shade. They can tolerate full sun in cooler climates but may wilt in hot weather. Water regularly and mulch around the base of the plant to help retain moisture. Deadhead spent flowers to encourage more blooms.

5. When do Pulmonaria plants bloom?

Pulmonaria plants typically bloom in the spring, from late March to May, depending on the variety and location. The flowers are long-lasting and can persist for several weeks.

6. Can Pulmonaria plants be grown in containers?

Yes, Pulmonaria plants can be grown in containers as long as they have adequate drainage and are kept moist. Use a well-draining potting mix and provide partial shade to prevent the soil from drying out too quickly.

7. How do I propagate Pulmonaria plants?

Pulmonaria plants can be propagated by division in the spring or fall. Dig up the plant and carefully separate the clumps into smaller sections, making sure each section has its own roots. Replant the divisions and water well.

8. Are Pulmonaria plants deer-resistant?

Yes, Pulmonaria plants are deer-resistant due to their hairy leaves, which are not palatable to deer. However, they may still be susceptible to damage from other animals, such as rabbits or groundhogs.

9. Can Pulmonaria plants be used as a groundcover?

Yes, Pulmonaria plants can be used as a groundcover in shady areas of the garden. They spread slowly by rhizomes and form dense clumps that suppress weeds. Plant them about 12-18 inches apart to allow room for growth.

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