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Plant Profile: Creeping Avens (Geum reptans)

Creeping avens is a herbaceous perennial and a member of the rose family, Rosaceae, that also includes almond, apple, and lady’s mantle. It is native to high mountains in Central Asia and Europe where it grows in rocky, gravelly soil. Plants have long runners up to 32″ in length and pinnately divided leaves with deeply toothed leaflets that are all about the same size. The cup-shaped yellow flowers are 1-1.5” across, appear singly in late spring to early summer and give way to fluffy pink seedheads. The genus name, Geum, is the ancient  Latin name for the plant.  The specific epithet, reptans, comes from the Latin word repto meaning creeping or trailing and refers to the habit of the plant.


Type: Herbaceous perennial

Bloom: Yellow cupshaped flower 1-1.5″ across in late spring to early summer

Size: 6-8″ H x 8″ W

Light:Full sun to partial shade

Soil:Average, moderately moist, very well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 6-8

Care: Deadhead to prolong bloom time, cut back after flowering; divide every 2-3 years

Pests and Diseases: None of significance

Propagation: Seed,  cuttings, division of rooted runners

Companion Plants: Gentiana verna, Aubrieta, Campanula portenschlagiana

Photo Credit: Wikipedia