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Epimedium × rubrum (red barrenwort) Epimedium × rubrum (red barrenwort)
Images courtesy of @©2020 Plant Delights Nursery

Epimedium × rubrum

red barrenwort

Looking for an easy, low-maintenance, long-lived groundcover for shade? Look no further! This Epimedium x rubrum has delicate, heart-shaped leaves that emerge red in spring, become lush green in summer, and have lovely fall color. The blooms are light and airy red and light yellow blooming in early spring. Great for moist shade locations but tolerates dry shade once established!

Epimedium × rubrum LP32 - 32 per flat Availability
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6-12 Inches


8-18 Inches

Bloom Color


USDA Hardiness Zone 4-8

red barrenwort Interesting Notes

Highly rated by Chicago Botanic Garden's Epimedium Evaluation Trials. -Chicago Botanic Garden

Epimedium × rubrum Growing and Maintenance Tips

Cut back old foliage in late winter for best spring display.

This variety spread more readily than most other Epimediums. Prefers rich and moist soils but can take root competition and dryness from deciduous trees. Tolerant of dry shade once established. 

Works well as a groundcover and filler - especially effective as an edger along paths. Plant in large masses in woodland gardens and shade gardens, underneath shrubs, or scattered amongst other shade favorites.

A hybrid with Japanese and European parents. 

Good Substitutions

barrenwort Epimedium 'Purple Pixie'
snowy barrenwort Epimedium × youngianum 'Niveum'
barrenwort Epimedium × versicolor 'Sulphureum'

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Shade
Full Shade
Part Sun
Part Sun
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant
Early Spring
Early Spring

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Green Infrastructure
Green Roof
Plug Type
Landscape Plug™
Ornamental Foliage
Propagation Type
Tissue culture