Heuchera, commonly known as coral bells, is a versatile and attractive perennial
plant prized for its colorful foliage and delicate flowers.
These plants are generally low-maintenance, making them popular choices for gardens and
However, like any other plant, heucheras can face various problems that may affect their health
In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the most common heuchera plant problems and
provide solutions to help you keep your garden vibrant and thriving.
Heuchera Plant Problems
Heucheras prefer well-draining soil. If the soil retains too much water, it can lead to root rot and
other fungal diseases.
To address this issue, amend the soil with organic matter such as compost to improve drainage.
Planting heucheras in raised beds can also be an effective solution.
These plants thrive in slightly acidic to neutral soil with a pH range of 6.0 to 7.0.
Test your soil pH and make adjustments using lime for acidic soil or sulfur for
Heucheras do not tolerate consistently soggy soil. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other
Ensure that you water the plants deeply but allow the top inch of the soil to dry out before watering
Consider using a drip irrigation system to provide consistent moisture without waterlogging.
On the flip side, underwatering can cause heucheras to become stressed and susceptible to pests.
Be attentive to the moisture needs of your plants, especially during hot and dry periods.
Aphids and Spider Mites:
These tiny pests can suck the sap from heuchera leaves, causing them to become discolored and
distorted. Use insecticidal soap or neem oil to control aphids and spider mites.
Regularly inspect the undersides of leaves for signs of infestation.
Slugs and Snails:
Heucheras are susceptible to damage from slugs and snails, especially in damp conditions.
Use organic slug and snail baits or set up beer traps to keep these pests at bay.
Deer and Rabbits:
Heucheras are often considered deer and rabbit-resistant, but in times of extreme hunger or if
these animals are particularly hungry, they may nibble on the leaves.
Use fencing or repellents to deter deer and rabbits from your garden.
Powdery mildew can affect heucheras, causing a white powdery substance to appear on the leaves.
Improve air circulation by spacing plants adequately, and avoiding overhead watering.
Fungicidal sprays can also be used to control powdery mildew.
Root rot is a common problem in poorly drained soil.
To prevent root rot, ensure proper drainage and avoid overwatering.
Remove and dispose of affected plants to prevent the spread of the disease.
Rust is a fungal disease that appears as orange-brown spots on the undersides of leaves.
Remove and dispose of infected leaves promptly.
Fungicides may be necessary for severe cases, but prevention through proper spacing and
ventilation is key.
Heucheras prefer moderate temperatures and can be stressed by extremes.
Provide shade during hot summer afternoons and protect plants from harsh winter winds.
Mulching around the base of the plant can also help regulate soil temperature.
In colder climates, heucheras may suffer from winter damage.
Protect the plants by applying a layer of mulch in late fall to insulate the roots.
Container-grown heucheras can be moved to a sheltered location during the winter months.
Improper Planting Depth:
Plant heucheras at the correct depth – the crown should be level with the soil surface.
Planting too deep or too shallow can lead to stress and poor growth.
Give heucheras enough space to grow by planting them at recommended distances.
Overcrowded plants can be more susceptible to disease due to reduced air circulation.
Heucheras are delightful plants that can add a burst of color and texture to your garden.
By understanding and addressing common problems, you can ensure that your heucheras remain
healthy and vibrant.
Regular monitoring, proper watering, well-draining soil, and prompt intervention in
the face of pests and diseases are essential practices to keep your heuchera plants
With these tips in mind, you can enjoy the beauty of coral bells in your garden for seasons to come.