What Are Yellow Wax Bells – Tips For Growing Yellow Wax Bells

Most gardeners keep an eye out for plants and flowers for the darker garden corners, and yellow wax bell plants (Kirengeshoma palmata) are good for the short shade list. The foliage is large and dramatic and the yellow wax bell flowers hang in delicate nodding blossoms.

What are yellow wax bells? These are unusual plants and rather unforgettable. If you’d like more information on these interesting ornamental plants, read on. We’ll also give tips on growing yellow wax bells.

What are Yellow Wax Bells?

The yellow wax bells plant is a unique beauty. Its dark green leaves resemble large maple leaves, deeply lobed and larger than your hand. The yellow wax bell flowers are small and pendulous, hanging in dainty yellow clusters.

The show doesn’t stop there. This handsome shrub also offers fascinating, three-pronged seed capsules that develop from the flowers in autumn. It is an intriguing addition to the woodland garden.

Growing Yellow Wax Bells

Yellow wax bell plants are perennials that thrive in USDA plant hardiness zones 5 through 9. They can grow in sun or partial to full shade, but anywhere you plant them, they need irrigation. Yellow wax bell flowers grow best when you keep their soil consistently moist. It is damaging to let them dry out between watering.

Before you start growing yellow wax bells, find the ideal garden site for them. It’s important to note that the shrubs can grow up to between 3 and 4 feet (1 m.) tall. Plant them some 36 inches (1 m.) apart.

Where to use yellow wax bell plants in the landscape? These plants have erect purple stems but are slightly shrubby and can be used nicely in an area of mass planting. They work very well as one of the features of a woodland garden. However, it is also possible to use a single plant as an unusual specimen. 

Also, don’t forget that yellow wax bell plants are great anywhere you need shade plants. Their bright flowers lighten up a shady corner and they also work very well in a shady border.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.