Getting To Know Tiarella - Spring Blooms Made For The Shade!

Getting To Know Tiarella - Spring Blooms Made For The Shade!


Tiarella cordifolia, more commonly known as Foamflower, Foam Flower, or sometimes called False Miterwort, are herbaceous perennials from the family Saxifragaceae. The same family as Coral Bells (Heuchera) that these unique Perennials resemble. 

Derived from the Latin word "tiara" which refers to the small turban-shaped fruit that can form, you will come to love and appreciate Tiarella for its ability to thrive in the shade! Foam Flowers are also among the rare Perennials that exhibit semi-to-fully evergreen tendencies in warmer, more frost-free climates!

Getting To Know Tiarella

Native to the moist forests and woodlands of the Eastern US, and Canada, and eastern Asia!

white tiarella

This clump-forming perennial spreads slowly by stolons like Strawberries do, forming dense, wide-spreading, low-growing mounds of ornamental foliage over time. Great at blocking weeds and covering the ground like “living mulch”, Foam Flowers happily ramble along and multiply without getting into any trouble.

Native Foamflower has delicate green foliage and foamy spires of white blossoms. But the many cultivars available on the market start with similar lush green tones that can later develop purple to burgundy centers!

The foliage turns a lovely reddish bronze in autumn and winter once frost has touched them! But in warm climates and mild winters, the foliage can remain semi-evergreen or fully evergreen

The charming flowers of Tiarella appear in wispy plumes from early spring until early summer. They are simply enchanting!


Their namesake blossoms come in an array of foamy bottlebrushes, spark-like clusters, and starry wands that are lightly fragrant and very long long-lasting! The tiny, white flowers on very long stamens draw in the pollinators and bees!

The erect, wiry, flower stems rise well above the foliage clumps and shine in the shade but also in your cut flower bouquets indoors for a burst of unique texture and lively color.

From the scalloped leaves of the Running Tapestry Foam Flower, to the pointed-lobed, lustrous leafy mounds and pinkish blooms of the Sugar and Spice. You’ll love the dramatic flowering shoots and tow-toned leaves of Pink Skyrocket, and the Cutting Edge Foamflower varieties!


Using Foam Flower In The Landscape

This lush carpet of ornamental foliage is why Foam Flowers make the front edges of any border a stunning focal point!

Spreading throughout the shade or dappled shade garden as living mulch or as a flowering groundcover, Tiarella won’t outgrow their garden beds or interfere with larger shrubs or perennials, Cottage gardens, mingling politely among them beautifully!


The perfect mass planting for shaded slopes, throughout the understory, or for naturalizing in those out-of-the-way areas without the worry that Deer and rabbits leave them alone!! Unless desperate, these beasties leave Foam Flower alone, but the beneficial insects will adore your drifts of blossoms!

Snip a few stems for bouquets and May Day nosegays!

Their smaller, space-saving size means Foam Flowers work in a wide variety of garden situations and can be enjoyed no matter how much room you have to grow them!

Keep them as delicious eye candy "Fillers" and "Spillers" in container plantings on shaded porches and covered patios for easy potted décor!

Try mixing and matching Foam Flower with their Foamy Bells (Heucherella) and Coral Bells (Heuchera) cousins! Foamy Bells are actually a hybrid plant that originated from a cross between the two Heuchera and Tiarella North American plant species! You can also let them mingle among Bleeding Hearts, spring-flowering ephemerals, Ferns, and Astilbe for a lacy shade garden presentation!

Growing Foam Flower Perennials

This woodland perennial is easy to grow! Tiarella will tolerate light sun with afternoon shade in cold winter climates but do best in full shade in warmer growing zones. Cold-hardy and adaptable throughout USDA hardiness zones 4 and up, Tiarella foliage color may be less vivid when they are grown in deep shade and they will have fewer blooms.

pink tiarella

These plants are healthier and more colorful when grown in a cool, moist area with acidic soil. Top-dress with compost and/or arborist mulch to maintain moisture levels and keep the roots cool and protected.

However, this Perennial cannot tolerate drought, and does not tolerate wet soil in the winter. Container-planted Foam Flowers will need winter protection.

Prune back the mounds in very early spring to clean away any old foliage for the new spring season and divide the clumps every 3-5 years. Otherwise, Foam Flowers are easy-going shade garden gems that are so very underutilized in the landscapes of today!

Order yours and light up the gloom by incorporating some foamy spring blooms with the help of!

Happy Planting!

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