Sweetwater Nursery

Gardening from the Experts

Creeping Phlox – Phlox subulata

Many love planting phlox sublata or creeping phlox due to its easy care maintenance and beautiful pastel shaded growth coverage qualities. No extra knowledge or skills are necessary to grow these hardy perennials that grow almost in any condition. Soil should be moist, and the soil should also provide excellent drainage. Plant in full sun to partial shade areas in zones 3-9 for reliable results. In the springtime, add fertilizer to the soil for better growth and more blooms. The needle-like green leaves will generally get thicker and woody as time passes, and these wooded areas will eventually stop blooming. Gardeners can clip these woody stem portions back carefully to encourage newer green growth able to flourish again.

The mature height of creeping phlox reaches about 4 to 6 inches, and its average growth spread is around 2 feet. These plants bloom in the spring with dainty flowers in a five-pointed star-shaped pattern. These gorgeous pastel blooms erupt into pink, white, purple or bluish purple delicate flowers that look sensational. Suitable for planting in gardens, window boxes or planters, creeping phlox looks especially enchanting cascading down over a glorious rock garden. To encourage better blooms, prune back these plants in fall, as they are dormant through the colder winter months.

Creeping phlox is typically used as a pretty and colorful ground cover. It needs little care and looks attractive in rocky areas where other plants usually don’t survive. Other than preferring moister soil, this plant doesn’t require specific soils. In climates that have harsh cold winters, these plants need to be protected to ensure survival. When first planted, it is best to add some nutrients to the soil, we use liquid with a backpack sprayer then water until the plant takes hold. Avoid deeply burying the stem at the time of planting. Water more during long hot summers. For easy propagation, split plant evenly through the root, divide and replant one portion elsewhere.

Perennials are a special breed of flowers. They are by far the backbone of flower gardens and landscaping and provide beautiful color and beauty and enhance other flowers and plants that surround them.

The top three most favorite perennials by avid gardeners are Virginia bluebells, trilliums, and blue lobelia. Any or all of these perennials will may any gardener look like a professional as they add beauty and color to any landscaping.

Virginia bluebells can reach up to 2 feet tall and have delicate, bell-shaped flowers that are mainly pollinated by butterflies, but begin with tiny pink buds, and their leaves are round in shape and a grayish-green color, enhancing the beauty of these spectacular flowers. They are also known as the Virginia cowslip. Many gardeners prefer to grow these along the side of a house or garage giving the appearance of a pretty country cottage feeling and making the atmosphere very relaxing to come home to! Too much rain, however, and they don’t do too well. They need well-draining soil for the best results.

Trilliums are another perennial favorite. They come in six different colors, which are pink, red, purple, green, white and yellow. There are three large leaves which surround this pretty flower, and the flower itself is made of up three pedals and three sepals, giving it the nickname of the “trinity flower.” Picking some parts off of the trilliums can kill it, and also there are a few laws that prohibit the picking of these articulate flowers. They also serve as the official flower of the Canadian province of Ontario.

Blue lobelia are stunning. They grow best in the front of a flower garden or as a border. Just looking at these beauties will make you smile! They will grow up to a foot in length and a width of a foot as well. Blue lobelia is a bluish-purple cascading flower that also will enhance any flower box. These flowers will attract hummingbirds so if hummingbird-watching is a hobby of yours, and these definitely will fit the bill. They need adequate water and won’t do well in drought conditions, and they do have some dangerous parts.

In summary, all of any of these backpack sprayers will make for a spectacular array of color and beauty to landscaping, flower boxes or a flower garden. They are relatively easy to care for, and will make any home shine with grace and beauty.