When it comes to tall, eye-catching flowers, Bear's Breeches are great choices. Bear’s Breeches are large perennial plants with glossy green leaves and tall spikes of flowers. They are always touted as architectural plants, and their leaves are often used as a motif in moldings, reliefs, and even jewelry. Many gardeners grow them for their foliage alone, although the flowers are quite nice themselves.Acanthus means bract, which are modified leaves that are often more colorful than the actual flowers. They help to attract pollinators. The botanical name for Bear's Breeches comes from the thorny look of their purple bracts. Although there are about 30 species of acanthus, only a couple are commonly grown as garden plants. While they are imposing and beautiful, they can be erratic, blooming well in one year and disappointing in another.
It can be invasive in U.S. zone 9, California and Oregon, and New Zealand.