Heartleaf Ginger, Asarum arifolium (formally, Hexastalis)
Native to the southeastern US, Heart-leaf Ginger is an evergreen perennial in the Aristolochiaceae family that can be found growing in woodland settings. In your garden, plant along a shady edge. Dappled shade is an ideal setting for this plant, it does not do well in deep shade. When conditions are right, it will self sow. Don't allow the plant to dry out in between watering.
One of its common names is little brown jug for the fleshy, jug shaped flowers that are pollinated by ants.
The foliage is evergreen and when exposed to cold weather, they may take on a purple hue. both the coloring and shape fo the leaves can vary greatly.
Its roots have a strong, aromatic aroma, similar to a mild pepper and ginger mix. Heart-leaf ginger is clump-forming. Its jug-shaped flowers are hidden under the speckled leaves.
Photos by K. Mulcahy