Lesser Periwinkle is a useful ground cover plant for shady or woodland areas, providing a carpet of beautiful purple flowers in spring.
It can be tricky to find a pretty plant that will provide ground cover and colour in a shady area, like under a tree or amongst a shrubbery. If you have a tricky space in the garden that's currently just bare soil where nothing seems to grow, then Periwinkle could be the ideal solution. This lovely, non-fussy plant will grow in almost any conditions, but is particularly good in shade. The attractive leaves are green with a dainty cream edge and are reason enough to give this plant a place in your garden, but they also provide the perfect contrasting backdrop to the pretty purple flowers which emerge in spring. Easy to grow and low maintenance, the gently spreading stems of this lesser periwinkle, which is typically smaller and less vigorous than a greater periwinkle, gradually fill the space without becoming invasive.
Use this reliable and pretty plant to cover bare soil in tricky shady spaces for year-round colour.
Plant Type: Shrub
Hardiness: H6 Hardy. Minimum temperature -20 to -15.
Plant Height & Spread (at maturity): H 10cm x W 1m (Mature age: 10 Years)
Foliage Colour: White, Green
Flower Colour: Purple
Fragrant Flower: No
Aromatic Foliage: No
RHS Award of Garden Merit: Yes
RHS Perfect for Pollinators: No
Foliage Type: Evergreen
Soil Type: Chalky, Loam, Sandy, Clay, Acid, Alkaline
Soil Drainage: Moist but Well Drained, Well Drained
Light Exposure: Full Sun, Part Shade, Full Shade
Planting Style: Coastal Garden, Gravel & Drought Resistant Garden, Cottage Garden, Informal Garden, Flower Beds & Borders, Banks & Slopes, Urban Garden, Wildlife Garden, Damp Shade, Woodland Garden
Season of Interest: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
Flowering (from - to): April - September
Lesser Periwinkle is low growing and spreading and generally unfussy about soil as long as it is not too dry or whether it's in sun or shade, however it does tend to do best in shade.
This variety is ideal for planting in shady borders and looks fantastic in a woodland planting scheme. It tolerates any soil type and is also happy in a container where it will adopt a trailing habit.
Water well when first planted and continue to water regularly throughout its first season, particularly if planted in a sunny spot. After it's first year it should be pretty self-sufficient in terms of watering.
It's not necessary to feed periwinkle plants, however you can apply a balanced liquid feed during the growing season to encourage healthy new growth, especially if growing in a pot.
Lesser Periwinkle is a fairly small ground cover plant but if it spreads a bit too far it's very easy to trim back to the size required with secateurs.