Darley Dale Heath Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie' (PBR) (Winter Belles Series)

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
heather 'Lucie'


The plant Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie' (PBR), part of the Winter Belles Series, is commonly known as Darley Dale heath. It is characterized by its evergreen nature and robust, bushy growth. The foliage presents a bright green color, with needle-like leaves that remain attractive throughout the year. During its flowering season, which extends from winter to spring, it produces an abundance of small, bell-shaped flowers that cover the plant like a delicate, colorful veil. The blooms are a soft pink hue, adding a splash of color to the garden during the colder months when few other plants are in flower. The overall appearance of Darley Dale heath is one of a dense, spreading mound that provides both texture and vibrant color to landscapes. Its foliage and blossoms create a stunning contrast against the winter backdrop, making it a popular choice for gardeners looking to add winter interest to their outdoor spaces.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Darley Dale Heath, Darley Heath, Mediterranean Heather.

    • Common names

      Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie' (PBR) (Winter Belles Series)

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The plant commonly known as Heather generally is not toxic to humans. There are no well-documented cases of poisoning from ingesting parts of this plant, so the consequences from ingestion are typically not a concern. It's always prudent, however, to avoid eating plants not explicitly grown for consumption due to potential allergic reactions or unknown individual sensitivities.

    • To pets

      Heather is considered non-toxic to pets. Therefore, it should not cause any symptoms of poisoning in animals such as dogs or cats if they ingest parts of the plant. Like with humans, it is wise to monitor pets to prevent them from ingesting large amounts of non-food plants since they can sometimes cause mild stomach upset due to the fibrous plant material, even if the plants are not toxic.

  • 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

    • Attractive Foliage: Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie' has evergreen foliage, providing year-round interest and color in the garden.
    • Winter Flowering: As part of the Winter Belles Series, it blooms in winter, adding color during the coldest months.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, it has good resistance to drought, reducing the need for frequent watering.
    • Low Maintenance: This erica is relatively low maintenance, requiring minimal pruning and care once established.
    • Rabbit Resistant: It is generally resistant to rabbits, making it a good choice for areas with wildlife.
    • Attracts Pollinators: Its flowers provide nectar for pollinators such as bees during a time of year when few other plants are in bloom.
    • Versatile Use: It can be used in various garden situations, including rock gardens, borders, and as groundcover.
    • Soil Adaptability: It is adaptable to a range of soil types, though it prefers well-drained, acidic soils.

  • 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

    • Creating Natural Dyes: The flowers and leaves of Heather can be boiled to extract natural dyes for coloring textiles, offering shades of yellow, green, or brown depending on the mordant used.
    • Thematic Garden Displays: Heather contributes to thematic gardens such as Scottish or Celtic designs, providing an authentic and traditional aesthetic due to its association with the moors of Scotland.
    • Floral Crafts: Heather's small, clustered flowers can be dried and incorporated into floral arrangements, wreaths, or potpourri, maintaining their form and color well after drying.
    • Photography Prop: Photographers use Heather as a foreground plant to add depth and texture to landscape photographs, especially when capturing moorland or heath scenes.
    • Miniature Landscaping: Due to its compact growth habit, Heather is suitable for creating miniature landscapes or fairy gardens, providing a sense of a lush, dwarfish forest.
    • Culinary Garnish: The sprigs of Heather can be used as an edible garnish for plating and presentation of desserts and some savory dishes, adding a touch of elegance.
    • Bioindicator: Heather is sometimes used as a bioindicator plant; its health and presence can indicate the condition of the ecosystem, such as soil acidity and nutrient levels.
    • Erosion Control: Heather's dense rooting system can help stabilize soil on slopes and prevent erosion, especially in regions with a similar climate to its native habitat.
    • Bonsai Cultivation: Heather can be trained into bonsai form, offering a unique and challenging plant to bonsai enthusiasts due to its fine foliage and woody stems.
    • Crafting Material: The woody stems of Heather can be used for crafting small objects or jewelry, sometimes combined with other natural materials like beads or metal.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The plant Erica × darleyensis is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The plant Erica × darleyensis is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Endurance: Erica (heather) are known for their hardiness and ability to endure cold winter temperatures, representing resilience and the ability to withstand hardships.
    • Protection: Traditionally, heather was believed to have protective qualities, with people using it to craft brooms to sweep away negative energy and guard their homes.
    • Good luck: Heather is often associated with good fortune, and carrying a sprig is thought to bring luck and ward off harmful spirits.
    • Admiration: The beauty and persistence of heather make it a symbol of admiration, recognizing someone's strength and tenacity.
    • Solitude: Heather sometimes grows in lonely places like moors and crags, so it can represent solitude or the enjoyment of one's own company.

Every 1-2 weeks
500 - 2500 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring to Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Heather 'Lucie' should be watered deeply but infrequently, allowing the soil to slightly dry out between watering sessions. This generally means watering about one inch deep once a week, but this may vary based on climate conditions. During the growing season and particularly in dry spells, you may need to water more frequently to maintain consistent soil moisture. In winter, reduce watering as the plant requires less moisture during its dormant period. It's vital not to overwater as heather is susceptible to root rot, so ensure adequate drainage. Depending on the size of the plant, use about a gallon of water per plant for each watering session.

  • sunLight

    Heather 'Lucie' thrives in full sun to partial shade conditions. It does best when it receives at least four to six hours of direct sunlight per day. An ideal spot would be one where the plant is exposed to morning sunlight but shielded from the intense afternoon sun, especially in hotter climates. However, in cooler climates, a full sun exposure throughout the day is beneficial for the plant's growth and flower production.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Heather 'Lucie' is cold-hardy and can survive in temperatures as low as 20 degrees Fahrenheit, but it prefers a range between 50-70 degrees for optimal growth. In hotter regions, this plant can endure short periods of heat above this range, but prolonged exposure to temperatures over 80 degrees can be stressful for it. The plant is adaptable to various climatic conditions as long as it is not exposed to extreme heat or cold for extended periods.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Heather 'Lucie' to maintain its shape and encourage new growth after the blooming period, typically in late spring or early summer. Remove dead flowers and any woody or damaged stems. Trimming annually also helps prevent the plant from becoming too leggy. The best time for pruning is when the frost danger has passed, but before new growth starts so you don't accidentally cut off the new buds.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Darley Dale Heath (Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie') prefers well-drained, acidic soil with a pH of 4.5 to 5.5. A mix of peat moss, sand, and loamy soil is ideal to ensure proper drainage and a suitable acidic environment.

  • plantRepotting

    Darley Dale Heath should be repotted every 2 to 3 years. It's best to repot in spring just before the growing season starts.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Darley Dale Heath thrives in moderate humidity conditions; however, it can tolerate a range of humidity levels as typical outdoor variations provide.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Darley Dale Heath in bright, indirect light indoors.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in partial sun, sheltered from harsh afternoon rays.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie' (PBR), commonly known as Darley Dale heath, begins its lifecycle as a seed, which, after germination, grows into a small seedling. It quickly establishes a root system and develops into a young plant, with needle-like foliage starting to appear. As it matures, the plant enters its vegetative growth phase, during which it produces dense, evergreen foliage and starts to form flower buds. The flowering stage occurs typically in winter to spring, showcasing small, bell-shaped flowers that attract pollinators. After pollination, if it occurs, the flowers develop into seed capsules containing numerous tiny seeds. The plant may also spread vegetatively through cuttings or layering, bypassing the seed stage, and this growth cycle repeats annually.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to Early Summer

    • Erica × darleyensis 'Lucie', commonly known as Heather, is most commonly propagated through semi-hardwood cuttings. The best time for this is typically during the summer months when the plant is actively growing. To propagate, one must select healthy, non-flowering shoots from the current year's growth. These cuttings should be about 2 to 4 inches (5 to 10 centimeters) long and include several leaf nodes. Leaves on the lower half of the cutting should be removed. The cut end of the shoot is then dipped in rooting hormone powder to encourage root development. Finally, the cutting is placed in a well-draining propagation medium, kept moist, and in indirect light until roots have established, after which it can be transferred to a more permanent location.