The Temperate Database is in the process of being updated, with new records being added and old ones being checked and brought up to date where necessary. This record has not yet been checked and updated.
Common Name: Rock Geranium
Heuchera americana is a Evergreen Perennial up to 0.45 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of materials..
Eastern N. America - Southern Ontario to Connecticut and Michigan, south to Oklahoma and Georgia.
Loamy woods and shady calcareous slopes and rocks[
Succeeds in any good sweet garden soil that does not dry out in spring[
]. Prefers full sun but tolerates partial shade[
]. Prefers a well-drained fairly rich and not too heavy soil[
A polymorphic species[
], it is apt to hybridize with other members of this genus[
The root is very astringent and has been used in the treatment of cancer and also as an external remedy in sores, wounds, vaginal discharges and ulcers[
]. It can be dried, ground into a powder and sprinkled onto wounds etc[
]. It is taken internally in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery and gastric ulcers[
]. It should be used with some caution since excess irritates the stomach and can cause kidney and liver failure[
]. The root is harvested in the autumn and is dried for use in decoctions or as a powder[
The root can be used as an alum substitute, this is a mordant that is used in fixing dyes[
]. The root is rich in tannin and it has been suggested that this is the mordant[
A good ground cover plant for the woodland garden[
]. Plants should be spaced about 35cm apart each way[
Seed - sow early spring in a warm greenhouse and only just cover the seed. Germination is usually fairly rapid. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer.
The seed can also be sown in the middle of spring in an outdoor seedbed and planted out in early summer.
Alternatively, you can sow the seed in an outdoor seedbed in the middle of summer for planting out in the following spring.
Division in early spring or early autumn[
]. It is best to divide the plants in August or early September, making sure that the woody roots are planted quite deeply with only the crown of foliage above the ground[