Bergenia ( /bərˈɡɛniə/) is a genus of ten species of flowering plants in the family Saxifragaceae, native to central Asia, from Afghanistan to China and the Himalayan region.
It's easily grown in average, medium, well-drained soil in part shade to full shade. Part shade is the more gentle alternative. Tolerant of a wide range of soils, but prefers moist, humusy ones. Evergreen in the South but may suffer winter damage in cold climates. Remove all damaged foliage in late winter to early spring. Prompt remove spent flowering stems. Easily grown from seed. Spreads slowly by rhizomes. Control for slugs.
Commonly called bergenia or heart-leaved bergenia, is a clump-forming perennial which is primarily grown as a ground cover. Features large rosettes of leathery, glossy, toothed, rounded, dark green leaves (to 10" long by 8" wide) which are heart-shaped at the base. Leaves typically form a thick, slowly-spreading clump of foliage to 12" tall. Foliage turns purplish-bronze in winter. Small dark pink flowers in dense panicles appear within or above the foliage on stout stalks to 16" tall in April. Leaves are often used in floral arrangements.
The genus name honors German physician and botanist Karl August von Bergen (1704-1759).
Specific epithet means heart-shaped leaves.
Commonly called pig squeak because of the noise produced by rubbing a leaf between thumb and finger.