Growing Guide
plant thumbnail

Rockcress, Wall

Herbaceous Perennial Flower

Also known as Caucasian Rockcress
Arabis caucasica
Brassicaceae Family
Synonym: Arabis albida, Arabis billardieri, Arabis alpina

Tiny, fragrant white flowers grace this dainty, cool-season alpine. Perfect for rock gardens, the front of garden borders, and spilling over rock walls.

Site Characteristics
  • full sun

Soil conditions:

  • tolerates droughty soil
  • requires well-drained soil
  • tolerates low fertility
Prefers alkaline soil.

Hardiness zones:

  • 4 to 7
Possibly hardy in Zone 3. Plants tend to melt out in heat in Zone 8 and warmer.

Special locations:

  • rock gardens
Plant Traits

Lifecycle: perennial

Ease-of-care: easy

Height: 0.5 to 1 feet

Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet

Bloom time:

  • late spring
  • early summer

Flower color:

  • white
  • pink

Most varieties are white. Others are rose or pink.

Foliage color: gray-green

Leaves are silvery dark-gray and toothed.

Foliage texture: medium

Shape: spreading mass

Forms dense mats of leafy rosettes.

Shape in flower: same as above

The tiny flowers borne in dense elongated racemes.

Special Considerations
Special characteristics:
  • deer resistant
  • non-aggressive
  • non-invasive
  • not native to North America - Native to the Mediterranean and Asia Minor
  • fragrant - Blooms have a sweet fragrance.
Special uses:
Growing Information
How to plant:

Propagate by seed, cuttings, division or separation - Stem cuttings taken in the spring are very easy to root.

Divide every 2 or 3 years after flowering or in fall.

The plants can be grown from seed, but cuttings are much easier and more reliable.

Maintenance and care:
Deadhead and cut the plants back after flowering to encourage healthy foliage growth. Unpruned plants develop long bare branches with leaves only at the ends. Pruning helps performance the following year, but don't prune in fall.

More growing information: How to Grow Perennials

‘Compinkie’: 1- to 2-foot plants with rosy-pink flowers. Cut back sharply after bloom to keep shapely.

‘Flore Pleno’: Later blooming plants with double, long-lasting white flowers.

‘Rosabella’: Rose-colored flowers that pale as spring temperatures rise.

‘Snowball’: 4- to 6-foot plants with white flowers.

‘Snow Cap’: Large white flowers on prolifically blooming plants.

‘Variegata’: White flowers on plants with cream striped leaves.