Gaultheria is a must for autumn and winter bedding schemes where it brings seasonal cheer.
Cute and colourful even on the darkest winter day, the checkerberry is a spreading, creeping shrublet, closely related to the heathers with small glossy evergreen leaves that have a wintergreen scent when crushed. The small pale pink flowers are urn-shaped and develop into pinky-red berries in autumn that often last until the following spring. Plant in a container and position where its colourful berries will make a welcoming sight for visitors to the garden or use as a handy groundcover plant that wont become invasive.
Plant a little piece of Christmas cheer in your garden!
Plant Type: Shrub
Hardiness: H5 Hardy. Minimum temperature -15 to -10.
Plant Height & Spread (at maturity): H 50cm x W 1m (Mature age: 3 Years)
Foliage Colour: Green, Red
Flower Colour: Pale Pink
Fragrant Flower: No
Aromatic Foliage: Yes
RHS Award of Garden Merit: No
RHS Perfect for Pollinators: No
Foliage Type: Evergreen
Soil Type: Acid, Clay, Loam, Sandy
Soil Drainage: Moist but Well Drained
Light Exposure: Part Shade
Planting Style: Informal Garden, Containers, Banks & Slopes, Urban Garden
Season of Interest: Autumn, Winter
Flowering (from - to): July - August
This delightful little plant prefers partial shade but is happy in a sunnier spot if the soil stays reliably moist throughout the year. Its other demand is acidity - so if you can grow rhododendrons or azaleas in your garden then Gaultheria will be happy in the open ground. If your soil isn't suitable then it may be grown in containers in a good quality ericaceous potting compost - don't use multipurpose mixes as they contain lime which will damage the roots of this plant. It is often used in Christmas baskets and other winter bedding displays.