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Bear's Breech
Scientific Name: Acanthus mollis L.
Family: Acanthaceae
Bear's Breech (Acanthus  mollis)
Bear's Breech in early spring
Recommended Temperature Zone:
sunset: 4-24,28-32
USDA: 7-10

Frost Tolerance: Hardy in phoenix

Heat Tolerance: Light shade to shade in Phoenix

Sun Exposure: Full sun (in cool area) to light shade

Origin: Southern Europe

Growth Habits: Fast growing perennial to 5 feet tall (1.5 m), 3 feet spread (90 cm)

Watering Needs: Regular water in summer

Propagation: Seeds division in spring or fall, root cuttings in early spring

Grown in antiquity gardens, the Bear's Breech inspired the Greeks' Corinthian columns. The acanthus can be very decorative in your garden. The fresh or dried flower spikes are used in floral arrangements.

Bear's Breech (Acanthus  mollis)

Cultural Practices:
The acanthus generally disappears in summer to grow back in late winter. In cold climates, mulch to protect the root system. It is possible to cut the bear's breech to the ground after it finished blooming to get earlier new growth. The root system can be invasive.

Blooming Habits:
The impressive flower spikes with white to purple flowers appear at the end of April and last until the end of May in Phoenix, later in the rest of the country. They can be dried for use in floral arrangements. Cut them after they finish blooming in order to keep the foliage longer.

Division, root cuttings or seeds in winter in Phoenix, spring in most of the country.

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Desert-Tropicals is dedicated to provide gardening advice, gardening ideas, and information about flower of all kind for landscape and collections. We try to check carefully the identification of the plants on the illustrations as well as the other information from the page, but occasionally errors do occur. if you notice anything that needs to be changed please contact us. Thanks.

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