Bergenia

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Bergenia

 

a genus of perennial grasses of the family Saxi-fragaceae.

The stem of Bergenia is shortened and has a fleshy rhizome. The leaves are large, leathery, and radical. On the flower stalk there are 20–40 red or white bell-shaped florets, most often in a corymbose cluster. There are 11 species of Bergenia, found primarily in Central and East Asia; four of these species are found in the USSR. The most important is Siberian tea (B. crassifolia), which is found in the mountainous regions of Eastern Siberia and in northern Mongolia, where it forms large fields in some places. Siberian tea has long been grown as a decorative plant. Bergenia has industrial value (it is used in tanning) and medicinal value. It is a source of tannin, gallic acid, arbutin, and other chemicals.

REFERENCE

Borisova, A. G. “Badan (Bergenia Moench): ego sistematika i khoziaistvennoe znachenie.” Trudy Botanicheskogo in-ta AN SSSR Ser. 5. 1956, issue 4.

M. E. KIRPICHNIKOV

References in periodicals archive ?
In her famous gravel garden in Essex the queen bee of plantswoman-gardeners is mad about bergenias.
In low elevations, November is time to plant bergenias or propagate new plants from divided clumps.
The entire plant turns deep purple, verging on beetroot, and demands the support of fiery neighbours such as bergenia cordifolia (elephant's ears) and euphorbia characias (spurge).
Although it has been developed largely for use in greenhouses, I've found it very successful in the open garden, especially among primula and bergenia.
BERGENIA OTHERWISE known as elephant's ears because of the shape of their leathery leaves, these cabbage-shaped low-growing perennials produce pink, mauve, white or red flowers, but their leaves can also change colour depending on the variety you choose.
ALSO known as elephant's ears because of its big, leathery leaves, the bergenia looks best planted in large groups or as a carpet under trees, and will growin any reasonable soil in sun or dappled shade, growing only around 11/2ft tall.
Bergenias are superior groundcover plants, with huge thick and leathery leaves ranging from rich greens to deepest plum red, and with some of the best varieties, such as "Abdendglut", striking crimson flowers.
Bergenias will tolerate any soil as long as they see the sun once in a while, which surprises me as this plant comes from a highly specialised environment in the Himalayas.
I shall do that in the spring and the same with the Euphorbias and the Bergenias, along with the perennial Wallflowers or Erysimums.
While deciduous trees and shrubs are putting on a great show as their leaves change to vibrant colours before falling to the ground, evergreens such as bergenias and mahonia are also turning sumptuous plummy and claret shades, and the variegated euonymus is taking on pink tones after the leaves are frosted.
As a result many bergenias, which traditionally bloom in spring, are already flowering and add welcome texture and colour to the late winter border.
BERGENIAS are among the most useful plants for unpromising situations, as tough as the Siberian mountains where they originated.