The flowers of Hepatica maxima are relatively small, mainly white or very pale pink, surrounded by a comparatively large green involucre. Flowering in April in the wild. The shiny black and white seed ripens much later and is the largest of all hepaticas. The handsome, evergreen, biennial foliage is the largest of all hepaticas growing up to 15cm. across. The thick leathery leaves have three-lobes which are very rounded, and edged with a hairy fringe, something like eyelashes. Sometimes the underside of the leaves can be a purplish-red. The distinctive, shiny black and white seeds ripens much later and are the largest of all hepaticas. Height: 20-40cm
Hepatica maxima requires an extremely sheltered position if grown outside. Plant on a cool, well-drained slope in a light ‘fluffy’ soil rich in leaf mould. It is essential that they are exposed to early spring sunshine, but they must receive plenty of shade immediately after flowering and especially during the heat of the summer. They will thrive under deciduous trees and shrubs or in crevices in the rock garden, performing best where there is good humidity. They respond well to a top-dressing of leaf-mould in autumn and an annual feed of fish, blood and bone in late winter Many enthusiasts prefer to grow H. maxima in clay pots in the protected environment of an alpine house or poly-tunnel.
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