Barrenwort Epimedium 'Arctic Wings' (PBR)

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
barrenwort 'Arctic Wings'


Arctic Wings is a captivating perennial plant known for its beautiful and distinctive features. It boasts a dense clump of heart-shaped leaves that emerge with a red tint in the spring before maturing to a lush green as the season progresses. As the leaves age, they develop intricate veining and may take on a slight bronze hue, adding depth and contrast to the foliage. During spring to early summer, Arctic Wings displays an impressive array of flowers. The blooms are shaped like delicate, nodding bells or spurs and are carried on slender, branching stems that rise gracefully above the foliage. The flowers are typically white with a creamy or yellowish tint, contributing to the plant's fresh and airy appearance in garden spaces. The overall visual impact of Arctic Wings is one of elegance and serenity. Its foliage and blossoms create a textural display that can act as a focal point or a complementary piece in various garden designs. Despite the exclusion of specific dimensions, it's clear that the plant has a neat, mounded shape that can fill garden spaces with its charming character throughout multiple seasons.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      Barrenwort, Bishop's Hat, Fairy Wings, Horny Goat Weed

    • Common names

      Epimedium 'Arctic Wings' (PBR)

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The common name for Epimedium 'Arctic Wings' (PBR) is the bishop's hat. There is no widely acknowledged toxicity to humans associated with the bishop's hat plant. It is generally considered safe, and there are no common reports of poisoning or adverse effects from ingesting parts of this plant. However, as with any plant, individual allergies or sensitivities could exist, and it's always prudent to avoid ingesting any plant material that is not known to be edible.

    • To pets

      The common name for Epimedium 'Arctic Wings' (PBR) is the bishop's hat. There is no significant toxicity reported in pets such as dogs and cats from ingesting the bishop's hat plant. It is typically considered non-toxic to pets. Although not common, ingestion of large quantities could possibly lead to mild gastrointestinal upset, which may include symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea. If any unusual symptoms arise after your pet consumes any part of the plant, it is best to consult with a veterinarian.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      1-2 feet (30-60 cm)

    • Spread

      1-2 feet (30-60 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Drought-tolerant: Once established, it has a degree of drought resistance, making it suitable for drier climates or water-conservation gardens.
    • Shade-loving: It thrives in partial to full shade, offering a beautiful ground cover option for darker areas of the garden.
    • Low maintenance: Requires minimal care once established, with occasional pruning to remove dead leaves.
    • Attracts pollinators: Despite excluding the medical properties, it's noteworthy that the flowers can attract beneficial insects like bees.
    • Deer resistant: Its foliage is typically unattractive to deer, which can help prevent damage to the plant and garden.
    • Ground cover: Spreads moderately to form a dense mat that can help suppress weeds and protect soil.
    • Visual interest: Offers a unique aesthetic with its heart-shaped leaves and sprays of delicate flowers, which can enhance the visual appeal of any garden space.
    • Hardy plant: It's resilient in the face of many garden challenges, including pests and diseases, making it a reliable choice for various landscapes.
    • Seasonal color: Provides interest throughout multiple seasons, with foliage that changes color in the fall and blooms in the spring.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Artistic Inspiration: Artists and photographers may use the elegant flowers and foliage of horny goat weed as subjects or inspiration in their works, integrating its beauty into paintings, drawings, and photographs.
    • Dried Flower Arrangements: The flowers and leaves of horny goat weed can be dried and used in long-lasting floral displays, adding texture and interest to indoor decor.
    • Garden Borders: Horny goat weed, with its compact growth habit, can be effectively used as a low-growing border plant in garden designs.
    • Educational Tool: This plant can be used in educational settings such as schools or botanical gardens to teach about plant reproduction and pollination strategies.
    • Habitat Creation: In a garden, horny goat weed can provide valuable habitat and food sources for insects, particularly bees and butterflies.
    • Photographic Contrast: Due to its vivid foliage color in autumn, horny goat weed can be used to create striking contrasts in landscape photography.
    • Seasonal Celebrations: The spring bloom of horny goat weed can be incorporated into seasonal festivals or celebrations, representing new beginnings and growth.
    • Themed Gardens: This plant is suitable for inclusion in fantasy or folklore-themed gardens, owing to its enchanting appearance and whimsical common name.
    • Culinary Decoration: While not traditionally consumed, the flowers could potentially be used as non-toxic decorations on desserts or in salads for a touch of elegance.
    • Winter Interest: The evergreen varieties of horny goat weed can provide greenery and visual interest in gardens during the drab winter months.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Barrenwort is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Barrenwort is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Fertility: Epimedium, commonly known as "horny goat weed," has been traditionally symbolized with fertility possibly due to its history of use in traditional medicine to boost reproductive health and libido.
    • Endurance: The name "horny goat weed" also implies a sense of vitality and endurance, which the plant symbolically extends to those who encounter it or use it in various cultures.
    • Youthful Energy: Given its purported properties that promote vigor, Epimedium is often associated with the restoration of youthful energy and spirit.
    • Adaptation: The 'Arctic Wings' variety, with its resilience in cold climates, may symbolize the ability to adapt to challenging conditions and environments.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring to early summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Bishop's hat (Epimedium 'Arctic Wings') prefers consistent moisture, especially during its growing season in the spring and early summer. It should be watered once or twice a week, allowing the top inch of soil to dry out slightly between waterings. The exact frequency will depend on the climatic conditions and soil type, with less watering required in cooler, wet climates, and more in warmer, drier areas. A thorough watering should be done such that each plant receives approximately one gallon of water, ensuring it reaches the roots rather than just wetting the surface.

  • sunLight

    For the Bishop's hat (Epimedium 'Arctic Wings'), dappled shade to partial sun is the best light condition. The ideal spot is one where the plant receives morning sunlight but is protected from the intense heat of the afternoon sun. These light conditions will help to prevent leaf scorch while providing enough light for healthy growth.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Bishop's hat thrives in a wide range of temperatures but prefers moderate conditions. It can typically survive winter cold down to about -20 degrees Fahrenheit, but the optimal growing temperature range is between 50 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Ensuring that the plant is situated in an area that avoids extreme heat over 85 degrees Fahrenheit will help maintain its health and vigor.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning Bishop's hat involves cutting back the foliage in late winter or early spring to allow new leaves and flowers to emerge unobstructed. This helps to rejuvenate the plant and remove any damaged or old foliage from the previous season. Pruning can be done annually, as new growth is about to begin, typically around late February to March.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    The best soil mix for Bishop's Hat (common name for Epimedium 'Arctic Wings') should be rich in organic matter, well-draining, and maintain a pH of about 5.5 to 7.5. A mix containing garden loam, peat moss, and perlite or pine bark would be suitable for this plant, ensuring that it has the right balance of moisture retention and drainage for healthy root development.

  • plantRepotting

    Bishop's Hat should be repotted every 3 to 5 years, preferably in the spring just before new growth begins. This plant prefers not to be disturbed too often, so repotting less frequently is acceptable as long as the soil remains fertile and well-draining.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Bishop's Hat thrives in moderate humidity conditions, typically around 40-50%. It is adaptable to the humidity levels found in most homes, but if the air is very dry, a humidifier or regular misting may benefit the plant.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Use well-draining soil, place in bright, indirect light, and maintain moderate humidity.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in partial shade to full shade, water regularly, and protect from extreme cold.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Epimedium 'Arctic Wings', commonly known as Bishop's hat, begins life as a seed, germinating in moist soil conditions in partial to full shade. The young seedling emerges in spring, developing into a small rosette of heart-shaped leaves. As it matures, the plant forms a clumping perennial with evergreen to semi-evergreen foliage, spreading through rhizomes. In early to mid-spring, it produces distinctive, delicate white flowers with long spurs, held above the foliage on slender stems. After flowering, the plant focuses on leaf growth, expanding its reach, and in favorable conditions, it can form extensive ground cover. In the late fall and winter, the foliage may die back, especially in colder climates, and the plant enters dormancy, with the underground rhizomes surviving until the next growing season.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to early summer

    • The Epimedium 'Arctic Wings', commonly known as the Arctic Wings barrenwort, is best propagated through division. This should generally be carried out in the spring or fall. The process involves carefully digging up the plant and separating it into smaller sections, each with a portion of the root system and several growth points or shoots. The divisions should then be replanted at the same depth they were originally growing, spaced about 12 inches (approximately 30 centimeters) apart to allow adequate room for growth. Watering thoroughly after replanting is essential to help establish the new plants. This method of propagation helps to maintain the true characteristics of the 'Arctic Wings' cultivar and is generally successful owing to the plant's resilient nature.