Doll's Eyes (Actaea)

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Doll’s Eyes (Actaea) is the plant that looks back at you in the landscape! A fun, North American native of moist woodlands, Doll’s Eyes is known for its distinctive white fruits that are held in clusters on top of thick red stems. When not fruiting, the soft blue-green foliage, reminiscent of astilbe, is a lovely addition to cool, shady gardens. (Actaea pachypoda)
Zones 3 - 8
Multiplies / Naturalizes
Winter Interest
Fragrant Flower / Foliage
Light Requirements
Half Sun / Half Shade
Full Shade
Mature Height 26-30" tall , 24-36" wide
Bloom TimeLate spring to early summer
Item Package SizeBag of 2

USDA Hardiness Planting Zones

To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.

  • If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F (zone 5) then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
  • If you live in very warm winter areas (zones 9-11) plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy (rest).

Find Your Planting Zone:

Plant Information

26-30” tall x 24-36” wide. If you’ve got a shady garden with rich, moist soil, Doll’s Eyes (Actaea) will thrive and bring ‘the unusual’ to that garden in late summer. Also known as baneberry, this long-lived perennial has a pleasing texture and habit, covering itself with soft, off-white bottlebrush blossoms in mid-spring. In summer, small white fruits develop with a purplish-black ‘eye’ which is actually the scar from the flower stigma. The effect is charming, but although it might be thought of as a choice for children’s gardens, all parts of the plant are poisonous. Doll’s Eyes requires steady moisture, but also requires well-drained soil as it cannot sit in standing water. It’s a great choice for the edges of a woodland blessed with humus-rich soil. Not only will it benefit from the shade and organic matter, the gardener will benefit from seeing those wonderful berries up close.  

More Information
Item Package Size
Bag of 2
Common Name
Doll's Eyes
Botanical Name
Actaea pachypoda
3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Light Requirements
Half Sun / Half Shade, Full Shade
Flower Color
Mature Height
26-30" tall
Mature Spread
24-36" wide
Bloom Time
Late spring to early summer
Planting Depth
Plant so that the top of the root is 1" below the soil line.
Ships As
Bulb, Rhizome, Tuber
Three toothed leaflets per stem.
Soil Type
Loamy Soil, Well-Drained Soil
Soil Moisture
Moist / Wet
Native, Multiplies / Naturalizes, Winter Interest, Fragrant Flower / Foliage
Ideal Region
Northeast, Southeast, Midwest
Planting Time
Neonicotinoid Free
Item Unit
bare root
Ships to Hawaii, Alaska & Canada

No longer available this season.

As soon as your order is placed you will receive a confirmation email. You will receive a second email the day your order ships telling you how it has been sent. Some perennials are shipped as potted plants, some as perennial roots packed in peat.  The ‘Plant Information’ section describes how that item will ship. All perennials and spring-planted bulbs are packaged to withstand shipping and are fully-guaranteed. Please open upon receipt and follow the instructions included.

Perennials and spring-planted bulbs are shipped at the proper planting time for your hardiness zone. Perennial and spring-planted bulb orders will arrive separately from seeds. If your order requires more than one shipment and all items are shipping to the same address, there is no additional shipping charge. See our shipping information page for approximate ship dates and more detailed information. If you have any questions, please call Customer Service toll-free at (877) 309-7333 or contact us by email.

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US Shipping Charges

Merchandise Total Shipping
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$20 to $34.99$8.99
$35 to $49.99$10.99
$50 to $74.99$12.99
$75 to $99.99$14.99
$100 and Over$16.99

Canadian Shipping Charges

Merchandise Shipping
Up to $24.99$14.95
$25 to $49.99$19.95
$50 to $74.99$24.95
$75 to $99.99$29.95
$100 and Over$39.95

If your order requires more than one shipment and all items are shipping to the same address, there is no additional shipping charge. If you have any questions, please call us at (877) 309-7333.

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