Little Heartleaf

Hexastylis minor (or H. heterophylla?)

heartleaf

Fair warning: I may have two different species listed on this page–I’m not sure of the ID.  Drop me a note if you know for sure.

This species of ginger has heart-shaped leaves that are smooth, waxy, and evergreen; they are often mottled with white. The leaves appear singly, or in a haphazard group.  A similar species, Virginia Heartleaf, has larger leaves that grow in a tight clump and have a slightly different flower.  Also, contrast heartleaf with  Wild Ginger (Asarum canadense), which has leaves that are larger, velvety, and deciduous.

The leaves and rhizomes of little heartleaf are aromatic; the hidden flowers are deep red with a whitish center.  You will have to dig down close to the ground to find them because they are often obscured by fallen leaves–but it is worth the hunt!  These flowers can be reddish purple or brownish with white highlights.  They are  exotic!

3 thoughts on “Little Heartleaf

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