If you are looking for more natives to plant in your shady spots this fall, consider our native North American foamflower.
This little gem with the botanical name of Tiarella cordifolia blooms in late spring and looks ethereal as it produces delicate white flower spikes with tiny star-shaped flowers.
It colonizes rapidly using runners to spread. Plant foam flowers under evergreens as they like some acidity in the soil. In the wild, they grow in damp woodlands and along stream banks where it remains moist but not constantly wet.
Cordifolia is the Allegheny foamflower and is a 6-10 inch wildflower that forms 1-2 foot wide clumps in zones 3-8.
The leaves are the shape of maple leaves. Tiarella ‘Brandywine’ has leaves with bright red veining. A more compact cultivar that spreads more slowly is Tiarella wherryi [where ee eye]. Tiarella ‘Oakleaf’ has leaves shaped like oak leaves, as the name suggests.
Scatter the tiny black seeds that ripen about 4 weeks after the bloom fades. The foamflowers can also be divided in the fall. Gently separate the crowns of the plants and set the divisions 12 inches apart and mulch well to promote a handsome groundcover.