Blue Plumbago

Blue Plumbago

Easy, Reliable, and Beautiful Fall Color!


The old adage goes that if you can't grow Blue Plumbago, it's time to move to the city! And that's really no exaggeration -- this perennial is quick to spread and puts up with a lot of abuse, from dry soil to neglect. With a constitution like that, you'd expect it to look rather weedy and tough, yet it is as dainty as a violet and as bushy as a Vinca!

The original late-bloomer, Plumbago makes a belated appearance in spring, after most of the garden is well under way. Quickly meandering over rocks and across troublesome bare spots, it begins blooming in late summer, just as the rest of the flower garden is calling it quits. The peacock-blue flowers are flattish and held wide open, just 3/4-inch across yet very prominent against the small, bright green leaves. As the weather cools, the foliage turns a rich mahogany, enhancing this plant's appeal.

Only 8 to 12 inches high, it forms mats 12 to 18 inches across. Plumbago is superb for ground cover, edging, or underplanting shrubs. Or, if you have a fall perennial bed, by all means plant it in front of your pink Mums and red Asters!

Dwarf Plumbago thrives in good soil or poor, in heat or cold, in sun or shade (partial shade is ideal). It does need good soil drainage and prefers dry to wet conditions, but these are its only requirements. Mulch lightly in winter in zones 5 and 6. Zones 5-9.