Purple sheep's burr

Acaena inermis 'Purpurea'

Photo/Illustration: 
Courtesy of Quansett Nurseries
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Purple sheep's burr (Acaena inermis 'Purpurea')
ah-SEE-nah ih-NER-mis
Genus:  Acaena
This New Zealand native subshrub has 3-inch-wide scalloped leaves and little purple-brown to pale olive leaflets. Its rhizomatous roots spread in a mat to support this plant's wonderful ground-cover form. In early summer, 3/4-inch-wide flowers appear on short stems, and brownish green sepals and white anthers contrast with the dark leaves. The rhizomatous roots of this plant spread slowly into a mat, forming a nice ground cover. Prune every five years or so for a neat appearance; little other care is required. -Gerald Gibbens, Regional Picks: Northwest, Fine Gardening issue #120
Noteworthy Characteristics:  Scalloped, purple leaves. Low maintenance.
Care:  Provide full sun and well-drained, sandy soil.
Propagation:  Separate rooted stems in early spring or fall, or take cuttings in late spring.
Problems:  Powdery mildew, rust.

Overview

Height
Less than 6 in.
Spread
1 ft. to 3 ft.
Growth Habit
Spreads
Growth Pace
Slow Grower
Light
Full Sun Only
Moisture
Dry to Medium
Maintenance
Low
Characteristics
Showy Foliage
Bloom Time
Early Summer
Flower Color
Brown
Foliage Color
Colorful/Burgundy Foliage
Uses
Ground Covers
Seasonal Interest
Spring Interest
Type
Shrubs

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Wall germander
Teucrium chamaedrys var. compactum
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Adam's needle
Yucca filamentosa ‘Golden Sword’
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Singleseed juniper
Juniperus squamata 'Blue Star'
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Dwarf wintercreeper
Euonymus fortunei 'Minimus'