Flora of Scotts Creek Watershed
Dicentra formosa - Pacific Bleeding Heart
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Family Name: Papaveraceae
Common Names: Pacific Bleeding Heart, Western Bleeding Heart
Origin: Native to California
Habitat: Damp shaded areas, open woods in moist areas, stream banks. Below 2200 m.
Life Form and Duration: Perennial Herb, 20-45 cm
Comments on overall growth: Rhizomed.
Foliage Description: Fern like, deeply dissected (secondary (or more) pinnate divisions), divisions long stalked, 20-50 cm long (total with stalk), bluish green, soft appearance, generally basal but occasionally attached to stem.
Infloresence Description: 4+ flowers in small clusters
Flower Description: Biradial, heart-shaped outline, nodding, rose to white. 2 sepals, small, deciduous. 4 petals in 2 pairs: outer pair giving heart shape, flaring at the tip, enlarged at base into a pouch for nectar, not attached to each other; inner pair not really visible under outer pair, oblanceolate, sticking together at tip over stigma, crested along back.
Flowering Season: March-July
Fruit Type: Plump pod/capsule, 1.5-2 cm long.
Fruit Description: Opens with 2 valves from base towards tip. Seed shiny, black ~ 2 mm long with fleshy arillus.