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 Flower
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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Yucca filamentosa ‘Golden Sword’
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Juniperus squamata 'Blue Star'
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Dwarf wintercreeper
Euonymus fortunei 'Minimus'