A Quick Guide To Moss Phlox
If you are looking for a hardy, easy to grow ground cover, moss phlox may be just the plant you have been searching for. It is an excellent choice for all types of situations, from rock gardens to containers, and can add a wonderful element of color without adding a lot of care and maintenance duties. It can suit the needs of everyone from the most novice gardener to the experienced horticulturist.
Despite its name, moss phlox is not a moss at all, but is actually a flowering plant that makes an excellent ground cover. It will provide your garden with a vibrant blanket of color each spring, when its five-petaled flowers bloom in groups of three to five. Because it is a perennial evergreen, its narrow and needle-like leaves will continue to provide your garden with interest and color even during the fall and winter months, when other plants have lost their leaves. Best of all, moss phlox is quite easy to grow and requires little maintenance, so it is a fuss-free addition to any garden.
Moss phlox is a very hardy plant, and grows best in planting zones 3 to 9. It prefers to be planted in full sun, although it will tolerate partial shade. Well-draining soil is a must, but beyond that the plant can make due with many types of soil, and requires no type in particular. In fact, it is resistant to droughts and it tolerates even rocky and dry land, making it a great choice for covering steep banks of dry soil. It is also commonly used to add color to rock gardens, as edging around garden beds and borders, and planted in raised containers, where it is allowed to spill over the sides. It can be combined with other plants that bloom in the spring for an extra burst of color, or planted on its own as an accent to garden features such as stone paths.
There is little maintenance involved in growing moss phlox. Because the plant has very few problems with pests or disease, it will hold its own quite well in the garden and doesn't need much attention. Although it is a creeping ground cover, it is unlikely to take over your garden. It only spreads about one to two feet to the sides and grows to around 4 to 6 inches in height. While it doesn't require regular trimming to keep it in check, pruning the moss phlox after it has finished blooming for the year will encourage healthy blooms. You should prune the plant by at least an inch all around, and by about one half for the longest stems. Because moss phlox is a perennial evergreen, it should not be pruned in the autumn; any dead or damaged foliage should be removed in the spring. Once every three years, divide the plants in the late summer or early fall, after they have bloomed for the year. This will keep the plant healthy, and also provide you with additional moss phlox to be planted elsewhere.
Moss phlox comes in quite a few different colors, including some varieties that have blooms of two-tone flower, so you can accent your garden with blue, white, pink, purple, red, or even striped flowers. It can be a beautiful addition to any garden, and a colorful way to fill in areas that would otherwise be covered with rocks or mulch. Why use the same old boring choices to discourage weeds and provide borders for your garden? Instead take advantage of the easy to grow, beautiful, spring blooming moss phlox, and add a splash of color and interest to your yard.