Saruma as a genus has only one species and is a wonderful ground covering woodland plant. Saruma henryi has wonderful clear yellow flowers and although it is a little rare in Australia it is well worth seeking out.
This is an herbaceous perennial related to Asarum. S. henryi will grow to 1m in a suitable setting, and it is the large mid green felt like heart shaped foliage that is the attraction as well as the flowers. Excellent in a shaded position in the garden, or perhaps grown next to pathway beside a building where sun is an issue.
The flowers appear above the foliage from late spring through to mid summer. This is a perennial and it is in early spring that it comes to life after a winter dormancy. A mounding, clump forming perennial, over time Saruma henryi will slowly spread to cover a good sized area. It grows well in dappled shade and this is its main attraction to gardeners. Being a plant that does not seem to attract slugs and snails, it is easy care as long as the soil does not dry out during summer.
Known as the upright ‘Wild Ginger’ the flowers are small and yellow, a good contrast against the foliage.
Try a part shaded woodland position in a soil enriched with mushroom compost. Flowering into early autumn and reaching around 70cm in height Saruma henryi is easily propagated by division. An easy care plant in a part shaded position. Closely related to the more widely grown, Asarum, they grow in very similar conditions.
As the foliage dies back when the weather cools, the plant can be cut right back to the ground level. This is also a good time to divide the clumps.