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Heuchera americana (American alumroot)
Makin, Julie

Heuchera americana

Heuchera americana L.

American Alumroot, Alumroot

Saxifragaceae (Saxifrage Family)


USDA Symbol: heam6

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)

American alumroot's leafless, hairy, sticky flower stalk rises 18-36 in. and surrounds its upper third with loosely grouped, minute, greenish, cup-shaped flowers. A somewhat hairy stalk bearing yellowish-green, bell-shaped, drooping flowers in loose, slender, branching clusters; usually 4-5 flowers on each branch. A clump of attractive basal leaves springs from an underground stem. The leaves are fuzzy, oval, lobed and somewhat evergreen.

Several similar Heuchera species occur in the East, many of which are difficult to distinguish from one another. The genus name honors the 18th-century German physician and botanist Johann von Heucher.


From the Image Gallery

10 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Inflorescence: Panicle
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Usually around 18 inches high, but can grow to 3 feet
Leaf: Deep green. Shades of purple, red, and yellow in fall.
Autumn Foliage: yes
Flower: Flower tiny
Fruit: Dark red

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Red , Green , Purple , Brown
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug
Bloom Notes: Pale greenish yellow or pale purple, so pale they almost appear white. Delicate and misty looking.


USA: AL , AR , CT , DC , DE , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MD , MI , MO , MS , NC , NE , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , SC , TN , VA , WV
Canada: ON
Native Distribution: CT to Ont. & MI, s. to GA & OK; Eastern North America, Zones 5 to 8.
Native Habitat: Rich woods; rock outcrops

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Low , Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Moist
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)
Soil Description: Well-drained, humus-rich, acid soils, sometimes rocky. Tolerates poor soil, low moisture, and lime.
Conditions Comments: In sunny areas, the leaves take on a bronze cast several months into the growing season.


Use Ornamental: Valued as a foliage plant and groundcover in shady Eastern gardens. Also grows well in pots.
Interesting Foliage: yes


Propagation Material: Root Division , Seeds
Description: Sow seed in spring. Divide root crown in spring or fall.
Seed Collection: Check for mature seeds in dark-brown capsules 3-4 weeks after the plant has flowered. The seeds are black when mature and are smaller than grains of black pepper. Dried seeds may be stored, uncleaned, in sealed, refrigerated containers.
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: The appearance of the plant is enhanced by division of the clump every 3 to 4 years.

Find Seed or Plants

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Native Plant Center at Westchester Community College, The - Valhalla, NY
Delaware Nature Society - Hockessin, DE
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE

Additional resources

USDA: Find Heuchera americana in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Heuchera americana in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Heuchera americana


Record Modified: 2013-09-09
Research By: TWC Staff

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