Practical ecological knowledge for the temperate reader.

Andromeda polifolia - Bog-rosemary

Family: Ericaceae (Crowberry) [E-flora]

"Andromeda polifolia is an evergreen Shrub growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.6 m (2ft in) at a slow rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 2. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from May to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, lepidoptera, self.The plant is self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid soils and can grow in very acid soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist or wet soil." [PFAF]

General: "Low spreading shrub from a creeping or horizontal rhizome; stems ascending, 5-80 cm tall, glabrous." [IFBC-E-flora]
Leaves: "Alternate, evergreen, thick, leathery, narrowly elliptic to oblong, (0.8) 1-4 cm long, 2-6 mm wide, abruptly sharp-pointed, margins rolled under, deeply grooved and with sunken veins on upper surface, lower surface with whitish bloom." [IFBC-E-flora]
Flowers: "Nodding, in (1) 2- to 6-flowered terminal umbels; flower stalks 5-20 mm long; corollas pinkish, urn-shaped, 5-7 mm long, 5-lobed; calyces about 1 mm long." [IFBC-E-flora]
Fruits: "Capsules, nearly globe-shaped, 4-6 mm wide, glabrous, 5-valved." [IFBC-E-flora]

Habitat / Range "Bogs, fens, and swamps in the lowland and montane zones; frequent throughout BC; circumboreal, N to AK, E to C AB, and N PQ; Eurasia." [IFBC-E-flora]

Status: Native. [E-flora]

Ecological Indicator Information
"A very shade-intolerant, submontane to montane, circumpolar forb (transcontinental in North America). Occurs on wet to very wet, nitrogen-poor soils (Mor humus forms) within boreal. cool temperate and cool mesothermal climates. Inhabits water-collecting sites with large accumulations of peat. Occasional amidst Sphagnum species in peat bogs. An oxylophytic species characteristic of nutrient-poor wetlands. (IPBC)" [E-flora]


Edible Uses

Other Uses

Medicinal Uses

Cultivation & Propagation

"Requires a well-drained, moisture-retentive, lime-free, humus- rich soil and a shady position[133, 182, 200]. Plants spread slowly by means of suckers when they are grown in a suitable position[182]. A very ornamental plant, there are many named varieties[182]." [PFAF]

"Seed - sow February/March in an acid compost in the greenhouse. Surface sow or only just cover the seed and place in a lightly shaded position[78, 133]. The seed usually germinates in 1 - 2 months at 12°c[133]. Prick out the young seedlings into individual pots as soon as possible, they are prone to damp-off and so should be kept well ventilated[78]. Grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter and plant them out in early summer once they are 15cm or more tall. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 7cm with a heel, July/August in a frame in a shady position. Takes 15 months[78]. Layering in August in a semi-shady position. Takes 18 months[78]. Division in early spring. The plants should be 'dropped' beforehand[78]. This entails digging up the plant 6 to 12 months earlier and replanting it somewhat more deeply. The buried branches will then root and form new plants when divided." [PFAF]


Page last modified on Wednesday, July 29, 2020 3:13 AM