Winter aconite sometimes blooms as early as February, but it comes into its own in March as the ground thaws and other plants just start to break dormancy. It creates a lovely gold-dotted carpet under leafless trees.
Like last month's featured plant, snowdrop, winter aconite is native to Europe and spread to North America because of its popularity as an ornamental plant. They are excellent naturalizers and can be left alone to fill out a garden bed. Winter aconite is in the same family as buttercups, and it brings the same sunny cheer its cousin provides later in the season.
Common Name: Winter Aconite
Scientific Name: Eranthus hyemalis
Light: full sun to part shade (under deciduous trees is fine since they fade as trees leaf out)
Size: 4"-6" tall and wide, but spreads naturally by underground tubers
Soil: fertile soil, medium moisture
Blooms: yellow, March-April
Other Notes: Deer resistant. To keep your winter aconite healthy, don't remove old leaves until they turn yellow.