These 100 or so species of creeping, mostly evergreen, perennials and subshrubs hail from California, Hawaii, and a lot of the Southern hemisphere. They are grown for their colorful leaves, unusual flowers, and showy, spiny burrs (which may attach themselves to pets or clothing). Grow Acaena as groundcover or rock garden plants.
CareProvide full sun or partial shade and well-drained soil of average fertility. Acaena will also grow well in poor soil, but they absolutely need good drainage.
PropagationTake cuttings in spring; separate rooted stems in spring or fall; start seed in containers outdoors in fall.
ProblemsPowdery mildew, rust.