How To Grow Leopard Plant (Ligularia dentata) In Your Garden

Ligularia dentata (Leopard Plant) is a notable perennial plant recognized for its large, kidney-shaped leaves and tall spikes of daisy-like flowers.

Leopard Plant usually attains a height and spread of three to four feet (0.9 to 1.2 m).

Ligularia dentata flowers
Ligularia dentata flowers photograph by yewchan; CC.

The Ligularia plant genus is known for its impressive foliage and striking yellow flowers. It can make a bold feature plant in damp, shaded parts of the garden.

It thrives in USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8 / RHS H6, and is not considered invasive in the USA.

How to Grow Ligularia dentata in the Garden

Ligularia dentata thrives best in partial to full shade and moist, humus-rich, well-drained soil.

Plant out during the spring or fall.

Ligularia dentata is not drought-tolerant and thus requires regular watering. This is especially so during dry periods. Mulch around the plant to help retain moisture.

Use a balanced slow-release fertilizer in early spring.

Leopard Plant
Leopard Plant image by Koichi Oda; CC.

Pruning isn't necessary, but faded flower stems can be removed to enhance the plant's appearance.

Plants are relatively pest-free, but be on the look out for slugs and snails. Keeping the area around the plant clean can help to prevent these pests.

Ligularia dentata is an excellent choice for shaded, damp parts of the garden. This will allow its robust presence and brilliant flowers can be appreciated. It is a great plant tio use to add interest to challenging moist and shaded sites.

How to grow Ligularia dentata as an Houseplant

To grow Ligularia dentata indoors, you will need to provide it with bright, indirect light or partial shade.

Maintain a temperature between 65-75°F (18-24°C). Plant it in well-draining soil and keep the soil evenly moist, but avoid waterlogging.

Plants will require fertilizing with a balanced liquid fertilizer every month during their growing season. Remove any yellowing or damaged leaves regularly. Divide every 3-4 years to prevent overcrowding.

Quick Ligularia dentata Growing and Care Guide

Scientific Name: Ligularia dentata.

Common Name(s): Bigleaf Ligularia, Leopard Plant.

Growing Zone (USA / UK Hardiness): USDA Zones: 4-8. RHS H6, Hardy in Northern Europe.

Best Used For / Garden Location: Borders, woodland gardens, near water features.

Plant Details

Life Cycle / Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial.

Plant Height: 3-4 ft (0.9-1.2 m).

Plant Spread: 2-3 ft (0.6-0.9 m).

Blooms: Late summer to fall.

Flower Details: Tall spikes of daisy-like, yellow flowers.

Leaf Foliage: Large, kidney-shaped, serrated, dark green leaves.

Fruit: Not notable.

Growing Conditions and Location

Best Light Conditions: Partial to full shade.

Suitable Soil Types: Moist, rich, well-drained soil.

Sowing, planting: Plant in spring, spacing 2-3 ft apart.

Germination time: 2-4 weeks, if starting from seed.

Propagation: Divide clumps in spring or autumn.

Plant Care: Water regularly, do not allow to dry out; cut back in autumn after flowering.

Growing in pots and containers: Possible, but will require regular watering.

Growing as a House plant: Not typically grown as a houseplant.

Further Information

Miscellaneous: Attracts butterflies; dislikes hot, dry conditions.

Pests and diseases: Slugs, snails, and powdery mildew may be problems.

Common Cultivars / Varieties: Ligularia dentata 'Othello' has purple undersides to the leaves; 'Britt-Marie Crawford' features dark bronze-purple foliage.

Family: Asteraceae, the Aster family.

Native: China, Japan.

References and Further Reading: RHS: leopard plant 'Desdemona'; Missouri Botanical Garden Plant Finder; Texas A&M: Big Leaf Ligularia.

Common Questions

Does Ligularia dentata make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Ligularia dentata makes for a great garden or landscape plant, especially for shaded areas. Leopard Plant's large, glossy leaves and striking yellow flowers make it a favorite for adding interest to these parts of the garden.

Is Ligularia dentata a fragrant plant?

Thi splant is not really known for its fragrance. The appeal lies more in its bold foliage and vibrant flowers.

What is the perfect location to grow Ligularia dentata?

Leopard Plant prefers part to full shade and a rich, consistently moist soil. It's a perfect plant for a shaded, damp location of the garden.

Is Ligularia dentata invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Leopard Plant is not considered as an invasive plant in the USA. It is a slow spreading plant.

How do I remove Ligularia dentata from my garden?

To remove Ligularia plants from the garden, first cut the plant back and then carefully dig out the root system. Ensure all roots are removed, otherwise regrowth will occur.


Leopard Plant / Bigleaf Ligularia is a herbaceous perennial that prefers moist, well-drained soil, and part shade. Its large, purple-tinged leaves and bright, yellow flowers make it a great choice for adding color and texture.

I hope that you have enjoyed reading this guide on how to grow Ligularia dentata. You may also enjoy the following growing guides: How to grow Callistephus Chinensis, Palm Spring Daisy, Senecio articulatus, and Cosmos plants in the garden.

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