Native to mountain woodlands from Virginia to Georgia. Often used as a ground cover, although it spreads slowly. The plant's real distinction comes from its evergreen foliage, which is much used in indoor arrangements. The shiny, heart-shaped leaves grow in basal tufts that reach 69 in. high; they turn bronzy in fall unless the plant is grown in deep shade. In early summer, flower stems rise to 212 ft., bearing foxtails of small white flowers at their tips.
Grow in acid soil with plenty of organic materialpreferably mulch of leaf mold. Locate under plants that appreciate the same conditions: dogwood (Cornus), rhododendron, azalea, Pieris. Space 1 ft. apart.