Darley Dale Heath Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina' (PBR)

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


Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina', commonly known as Darley Dale heath, is a lovely evergreen shrub with a dense, bushy habit. It showcases a profusion of dainty, bell-shaped flowers that have a rich, deep pink hue which fades to lighter pink as they mature. The blooms stand out against the dark green foliage, which is composed of needle-like leaves that persist throughout the year, adding texture to the garden landscape. This plant is particularly noted for its striking flower display, which can last from late autumn through to the early spring, providing color and interest during the drab winter months. The overall appearance of Darley Dale heath is one of vibrancy and resilience, making it a popular choice for gardeners looking to add a long-lasting splash of color to their garden beds, borders, or containers.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Darley Dale Heath, Darley Heath.

    • Common names

      Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina' (PBR)

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The common name for Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina' (PBR) is Heather. It is generally considered to be non-toxic to humans. Therefore, ingestion of this plant is not typically associated with poisoning or adverse health effects.

    • To pets

      Heather, the common name for Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina' (PBR), is also generally considered to be non-toxic to pets. There is no well-documented toxicity for this plant in animals, and ingestion should not cause poisoning or serious consequences. However, as with any non-food plant, individual animals may have different sensitivities or reactions, and ingestion should still be avoided when possible. If a pet does ingest part of the plant and exhibits unusual symptoms, it is advisable to consult 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

    • Winter Interest: Adds color to the garden with its deep pink to red flowers during the bleak winter months.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, has a good resistance to drought conditions, reducing the need for frequent watering.
    • Low Maintenance: Requires minimal pruning and care, making it ideal for gardeners of all levels.
    • Attracts Wildlife: The flowers provide nectar for bees and other pollinating insects during the winter when few other plants are in bloom.
    • Evergreen Foliage: Retains its leaves throughout the year, ensuring constant greenery in the garden.
    • Versatility: Can be used for borders, groundcover, containers, and rockeries, offering flexibility in garden design.
    • Frost Hardy: Resistant to frost, which makes it suitable for cold climates and minimizes winter damage.

  • 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

    • Erosion control: Erica × darleyensis, commonly known as Darley Dale heath, is useful for stabilizing soil on slopes and preventing erosion due to its dense root system.
    • Natural dye: The flowers of the Darley Dale heath can be used to create a natural dye for textiles in shades of yellow, depending on the mordant used.
    • Winter garden interest: With its evergreen foliage and winter blossoms, Darley Dale heath adds color and texture to winter gardens when most plants are dormant.
    • Photography prop: The vibrant flowers and attractive greenery make Darley Dale heath a popular choice for photographers looking to add natural beauty to their compositions.
    • Model landscaping: Due to its small size and scale-like appearance, it's used in model making and miniature gardens to simulate larger trees and landscapes.
    • Floral arrangements: Both fresh and dried, the sprigs of Darley Dale heath can be used in floral arrangements for rustic or winter-themed decorations.
    • Bonsai: Some enthusiasts may use Darley Dale heath for bonsai due to its small leaves and potential for woody stems with age.
    • Craft projects: The branches and flowers of the plant can be used in making wreaths and other craft projects, adding a touch of nature to handmade items.
    • Container gardens: Darley Dale heath is suitable for container gardening, especially in areas where gardeners want to create year-round interest on patios or balconies.
    • Wildlife gardens: While it is not their primary use, the flowers of Darley Dale heath can provide a source of nectar for early pollinators such as bees when few other plants are in bloom.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Winter Heath is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Winter Heath is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Adaptability: Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina' is a hybrid, signaling its ability to adapt and thrive in various environments.
    • Survival: As a heath plant, it is capable of surviving in poor soils, symbolizing resilience and toughness.
    • New Beginnings: Its vigorous growth in spring aligns with themes of rebirth and fresh starts.
    • Protection: Heather plants have been used traditionally as bedding and for thatching roofs, representing shelter and protection.
    • Solitude: Synonymous with the solitary beauty of the moors it often inhabits, it can symbolize a contented solitude.

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

    The Winter Heath, commonly known as Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina', should be watered deeply to ensure moisture reaches the roots, usually about once a week during its growing season. Avoid shallow watering; it's best to water the plant with about 1 gallon of water for medium-sized plants each time you water. During the dormant season in winter, reduce watering frequency as the plant's water requirements decrease. Always check the soil moisture before watering; the soil should be slightly dry at the top but moist at the root level. Over-watering can lead to root rot, so ensure proper drainage.

  • sunLight

    The Winter Heath thrives best in full sun to partial shade conditions. Ideally, the plant should receive at least 4 to 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. A spot that gets morning sun and afternoon shade would be perfect, especially in hotter climates, to prevent the midday sun from scorching the leaves.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The ideal temperature range for Winter Heath is between 60°F and 70°F, but it is quite tolerant of colder temperatures and can survive in conditions as low as 20°F to 30°F. However, it's best to avoid prolonged exposure to temperatures above 80°F, which can stress the plant.

  • scissorsPruning

    Winter Heath benefits from light pruning to maintain its shape and encourage bushier growth. The best time to prune is immediately after flowering, which is typically in late spring. Trim off about one-third of the height of the plant to remove spent flowers and revitalize its appearance.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    For winter heath 'Rubina', the best soil mix is well-draining and acidic with a pH between 4.5 and 5.5. A mix of peat, sand, and loamy soil can accommodate its needs, keeping the roots moist but not waterlogged.

  • plantRepotting

    Winter heath 'Rubina' typically needs repotting every two to three years. Repot in spring before new growth starts, being careful not to plant it deeper than it was previously.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Winter heath 'Rubina' tolerates a wide range of humidity levels, but it does best in conditions that replicate its natural heathland habitat, which are not excessively humid.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Bright, indirect light and cool temps are ideal for 'Rubina' indoors.

    • Outdoor

      Plant 'Rubina' in acidic soil with full to partial sun.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Erica x darleyensis 'Rubina', commonly known as Darley Dale heath, begins its life as a seed, which after sowing, germinates in appropriate conditions of moisture and light. The seedling emerges and develops into a young heather plant, establishing a root system and foliage. As it matures, it enters the vegetative growth stage, producing woody stems and needle-like leaves. It reaches reproductive maturity when it begins to bloom, typically showing pink to reddish-purple flowers in late winter to early spring. After pollination, the flowers may produce small capsules containing seeds, which when dispersed, can give rise to new plants, continuing the cycle. Throughout its life, which can span several years, Darley Dale heath can be pruned to maintain shape and encourage bushier growth, and will experience periods of dormancy typically corresponding with seasonal weather changes.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to Summer

    • Propogation: Erica × darleyensis 'Rubina', commonly known as Heather or Darley Dale Heath, is typically propagated through semi-hardwood cuttings. The most popular and effective method involves taking cuttings that are 3 to 5 inches (7.5 to 12.5 centimeters) long from the semi-hardwood part of the plant, which is firm and slightly flexible. This is usually done in late summer. The leaves on the lower half of the cutting should be removed, and the cut end may be treated with rooting hormone to encourage root growth. The cutting is then inserted into a pot filled with a mixture of peat and perlite or coarse sand, ensuring good contact between the cutting and the rooting medium. The pot should be placed in a protected environment with indirect light and kept moist but not wet. Rooting can take several weeks, and once the cuttings have rooted and established, they can be transplanted into individual pots.