≡ Menu

Plants for a Plant Zoo: Goat’s Beard (Aruncus dioicus)

With its feathery plumes of tiny cream colored flowers moving gracefully over dark green leaves this shrub-like herbaceous perennial makes a beautiful presence in a woodland setting, beside a stream or as part of a water or bog garden.  The flowering plumes are  1-2′ long and composed of either male or female  flowers growing on different plants.  The  male flowers are considered more attractive because of their numerous stamens, brighter white color,  and more upright bearing.  Even after the flowers have faded the clumps of large pinnately compound  leaves  remain attractive all summer.    The flowers attract butterflies and the plant serves as a larval host for dusky azure.  Native to North America, the indigenous people in the Northwest used the plant medicinally to treat a variety of ailments.  For small gardens the 3′ tall cultivar ‘Kneiffii’ may be more suitable.  Photo Credit Wikimedia Commons

Type: Herbaceous perennial

Height: 4-6′

Bloom Color:  Cream

Bloom Time: Early to mid-summer

Light: Full sun to part shade; afternoon shade in southern part of range

Soil: Fertile, moderate moist to wet but tolerates less

Hardiness: Zones 3-7

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons