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Acanthus mollis (Bear's breeches)

Intermediate
skill rating
2 hours care
per year
1.5m
Max height
1.5m
Max spread
2-5 years
To maturity

Plant details

Botanical name

Acanthus mollis

Other names

Bear's breeches, Brank ursine, Common bear's breech, Soft-leaved bear's breeches

Genus

Acanthus Acanthus

Species

A. mollis - A. mollis is a clump-forming perennial with shiny, deeply lobed, dark green leaves and erect racemes of white flowers with purple bracts borne on purple-tinted stems in late summer.


Acanthus mollis is: Deciduous

Habit

Clump-forming, Upright

Flower

Purple, White in Spring; Purple, White in Summer

Foliage

Dark-green in Spring; Dark-green in Summer

How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest free

Powdery mildew Powdery mildew

General care

Pruning

Cut down old flower stems.

Propagation

Propagate by sowing seed in spring or by root cuttings in winter. The easiest way is to divide the roots at any time between autumn and early spring.

Propagation methods

Division, Root cuttings


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Where to grow

Acanthus mollis (Bear's breeches) will reach a height of 1.5m and a spread of 1.5m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Architectural, Cottage/Informal, Drought Tolerant, Flower Arranging, Beds and borders, Low Maintenance, Mediterranean

Cultivation

Prefers deep, fertile, well-drained loam but tolerate most soils. Drought tolerant once established.

Soil type

Chalky, Loamy, Sandy

Soil drainage

Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Full Sun, Partial Shade

Aspect

North, South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

Hardiness

Hardy (H4)

Companion plants

Botanical name

Acanthus mollis

Other names

Bear's breeches, Brank ursine, Common bear's breech, Soft-leaved bear's breeches

Genus

Acanthus Acanthus

Species

A. mollis - A. mollis is a clump-forming perennial with shiny, deeply lobed, dark green leaves and erect racemes of white flowers with purple bracts borne on purple-tinted stems in late summer.

Foliage

Deciduous

Habit

Clump-forming, Upright


Colour

Flower

Purple, White in Spring; Purple, White in Summer

Foliage

Dark-green in Spring; Dark-green in Summer


How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest free

Specific diseases

Powdery mildew

General care

Pruning

Cut down old flower stems.

Propagation

Propagate by sowing seed in spring or by root cuttings in winter. The easiest way is to divide the roots at any time between autumn and early spring.

Propagation methods

Division, Root cuttings


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Acanthus mollis (Bear's breeches) will reach a height of 1.5m and a spread of 1.5m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Architectural, Cottage/Informal, Drought Tolerant, Flower Arranging, Beds and borders, Low Maintenance, Mediterranean

Cultivation

Prefers deep, fertile, well-drained loam but tolerate most soils. Drought tolerant once established.

Soil type

Chalky, Loamy, Sandy

Soil drainage

Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Full Sun, Partial Shade

Aspect

North, South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

Hardiness

Hardy (H4)

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July 2015

This plant took a few year to begin flowering. (16/01/2012)

(04/05/2012)

Acanthus, The Walled Garden, Ravenscourt Park, London

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Chalky, Loamy, Sandy Tell us...
Soil drainage: Well-drained Tell us...
Soil pH: Acid, Alkaline, Neutral Tell us...
Light: Full Sun, Partial Shade Tell us...
Aspect: North, South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Exposed, Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Hardy (H4) Tell us...

DISCUSS THIS PLANT

How do we get rid of acanthus

We have several clumps of Acanthus in our garden and would like to get rid of them. No success in trying to dig them up as there always seems to be a tiny bit left which then grows into another… read more

controling

I have inherited my garden with a big acanthus that seems to be spreading and sprouting up anywhere it can. How and when do I take care of the sprouting? I guess I did it at the wrong time this year… read more

No flowers

Plenty of healthy looking green leaves but no flowers for the second year running. Any ideas , please? read more

Acanthus Mollis - rotting?

The leaves appear to be rotting - yellowing with brown edges, there are a few small circular holes. Plant info says mainly pest free but our plants are far from healthy! Any ideas?? read more

Acanthus mollis

The leaves of this plant are generally considered by historians to have been the design inspiration for the Corinthian column capitals of Roman architecture.In Spain I have seen the subsp… read more

There are 20 active discussions about Acanthus mollis (Bear's breeches)

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