Black Ruby Saxifrage Saxifraga Black Ruby (fortunei) (5)

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
saxifrage 'Black Ruby'


The Saxifraga Black Ruby, also known as the Strawberry Begonia or Strawberry Geranium, is a visually striking plant with a unique appearance. It features vibrant green leaves that are rounded and often have a slightly heart-shaped base. The leaves are known for their textured and hairy surface, which gives them a soft, velvety feel. Edges of the leaves show a scalloped pattern that adds to their ornamental appeal. The standout feature of the Strawberry Begonia is its rich, deep red to nearly black veins that contrast dramatically against the bright green foliage. These dark networks sprawl across the leaf's surface like the intricate work of a fine painter, accentuating the color play between green and ruby black. This interplay of colors provides a distinctive look that catches the eye and makes the plant an attractive choice for collectors and enthusiasts alike. In suitable conditions, the Saxifraga Black Ruby may produce delicate flower stalks that elevate above the foliage. The flowers may add a soft contrast against the dark veins, though the focus for this plant often remains on its stunning leaf pattern and coloration. Overall, the visual appeal of the Strawberry Begonia lies in the lush, colorful leaves, which serve as a backdrop for the more delicate and subtle aspects of its appearance.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      Black Ruby Saxifrage, Fortune's Saxifrage, Spotted Saxifrage.

    • Common names

      Saxifraga fortunei 'Black Ruby'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Saxifraga Black Ruby, commonly known as Saxifraga, is not known to be toxic to humans. Therefore, there are no specific symptoms of poisoning associated with this plant, as ingestion of its parts is generally considered safe. Nonetheless, it's always advisable to exercise caution and avoid eating ornamental plants, as different individuals may have varying sensitivities or allergic reactions.

    • To pets

      Saxifraga Black Ruby, commonly known as Saxifraga, is not known to be toxic to pets such as cats and dogs. There are no documented symptoms of poisoning from ingestion of this plant by pets, suggesting that it is generally considered non-toxic to them. However, although it is not expected to be harmful, pet owners should still supervise their animals to prevent any potential gastrointestinal upset that could occur from ingesting plant material.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      6 inches (15 cm)

    • Spread

      12 inches (30 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aesthetic Appeal: The Saxifraga Black Ruby adds a splash of color to gardens and landscapes with its striking dark leaves and bright blooms.
    • Low Maintenance: It is known for being relatively easy to care for, requiring minimal upkeep once established.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, this plant is tolerant of dry conditions, making it suitable for rock gardens and drought-prone areas.
    • Attracts Pollinators: The flowers of the Saxifraga Black Ruby can attract butterflies and bees, promoting pollination in the garden.
    • Ground Cover: Its spreading habit makes it an excellent ground cover option, helping to suppress weeds and stabilize soil.

  • 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

    • Saxifraga Black Ruby can be used as a natural dye for fabrics and textiles, providing a unique hue that could vary based on the part of the plant used.
    • It is suitable for creating living moss graffiti on walls or surfaces in the garden, as the Saxifraga is capable of growing on vertical surfaces, adding a textured green dimension to garden art.
    • The plant can be cultivated for educational purposes in schools or botanical workshops to teach about plant adaptation in rock gardens and challenging growth conditions.
    • As a cold-hardy plant, Saxifraga Black Ruby can be utilized in frost-themed garden displays to add visual interest during the cooler months.
    • This plant can serve as a biological indicator for researchers studying the effects of climate change on alpine plants due to its natural high-altitude habitat.
    • Saxifraga Black Ruby can be incorporated into eco-friendly roof gardens due to its low maintenance and hardiness, helping to insulate buildings and support biodiversity.
    • The leaves of Saxifraga Black Ruby can be used as a natural potpourri when dried, adding a rustic and earthy scent to a room.
    • For hobbyists in miniature landscaping or model train enthusiasts, this plant can be used to create realistic small-scale landscapes due to its petite size and rosette-forming growth habit.
    • Entomologists or hobbyists may use the plant to attract and study certain species of insects that are known to feed on or pollinate Saxifraga Black Ruby.
    • The plant's ability to grow in cracks and crevices can be applied in experimental ecological restoration projects to stabilize and rejuvenate soil in eroded areas.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The plant Saxifraga is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The plant Saxifraga is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Determination: The Saxifraga genus gets its name from Latin "saxifraga" which means "stone-breaker." This symbolizes the plant's determination and ability to thrive, even in rocky, challenging environments.
    • Tenacity: As a plant that can hold fast to craggy surfaces and withstand harsh conditions, it symbolizes a tenacious grip on life and the power to persist against the odds.
    • Enduring Love: Owing to its resilient nature, it can be seen as a symbol of love that endures through hardships and stands the test of time.
    • Protection: Historically, some have believed that Saxifraga plants have protective qualities, which makes them symbolic of sheltering and safeguarding what's important.
    • Adaptability: Saxifraga plants' ability to adapt to various conditions, survive with minimal soil, and in cracks and crevices symbolize flexibility and the capacity to thrive in different environments.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-Early Summer
Not needed
  • water dropWater

    Saxifraga 'Black Ruby', commonly known as Fortune's Saxifrage, prefers consistent moisture but does not like to sit in waterlogged soil. It should be watered deeply once the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, which may roughly be once a week depending on environmental conditions. During the growing season in spring and summer, water might be needed more frequently. The amount of water will vary with pot size, but as a rule, aim to provide 1 to 2 gallons of water every two weeks, adjusting for weather and soil drainage. Ensure that the water is evenly distributed across the soil until it begins to drain from the bottom of the pot.

  • sunLight

    Fortune's Saxifrage thrives best in partial shade to full shade conditions. It should be positioned in a spot where it can receive filtered sunlight or be in the shadow for part of the day. Direct, strong sunlight can scorch the foliage of the plant, so care should be taken to avoid these locations, especially during the peak sun hours of the day.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The ideal temperature range for Fortune's Saxifrage is between 60°F and 75°F. It can, however, tolerate temperatures as low as 50°F and as high as 80°F. To avoid cold damage, it should not be exposed to temperatures below 40°F. Keeping the plant within this temperature range will help ensure its health and vitality.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Fortune's Saxifrage to maintain its shape and encourage denser growth. The best time for pruning is in early spring, before new growth starts. Cut back any dead or damaged foliage, and lightly trim the plant to keep its compact form. Pruning once a year is usually sufficient for this plant.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Saxifraga 'Black Ruby' prefers moist, well-draining soil with a mix of peat, perlite, and all-purpose potting soil at a slightly acidic to neutral pH of around 5.5 to 7.

  • plantRepotting

    Saxifraga 'Black Ruby' should be repotted every 2 to 3 years or when it has outgrown its current container, usually in early spring.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Saxifraga 'Black Ruby' thrives in moderate to high humidity levels but is quite adaptable and can tolerate the humidity levels found in most homes.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place in bright, indirect light and keep soil consistently moist.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in partial shade with moist, well-drained soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      6-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The life cycle of the Saxifraga fortunei, commonly known as Fortune's Saxifrage, begins with seed germination which occurs in a damp, well-draining environment, with young seedlings emerging in spring. The seedlings develop into rosettes with distinctive, often darkly pigmented foliage that may have a ruby or maroon tinge, depending on the variety. As the plant matures, it produces a flowering stalk with clusters of small, star-shaped flowers, typically blooming in late summer or early autumn. After pollination, the flowers develop into capsules containing tiny seeds, which are then dispersed by wind or water. The parent plant may die back in winter, depending on the climate, but will regrow from its perennial root system in spring. This cycle of flowering and seed production continues annually, with the plant also capable of vegetative propagation through division, ensuring its survival and spread.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • Propogation: The Saxifraga 'Black Ruby', commonly referred to as Black Ruby Saxifrage, is a perennial that is typically propagated during its active growth period which is late spring to early summer. The most popular method of propagation for Black Ruby Saxifrage is by division. This involves carefully lifting the plant out of the ground or its container and separating the clumps into smaller sections, each with several shoots and a well-developed root system. This process is gently done by hand or with the aid of a sharp knife, ensuring that each division has healthy roots and a few leaves. The divisions are then replanted in well-draining soil, at the same depth they were growing before, and watered thoroughly to help establish the new plants. Care should be taken to keep the soil moist but not waterlogged, and the new plants should be kept in a spot with bright, indirect light until they are established.