This low growing perennial makes a nice ground cover by lighting up shady spots. Over 40 species of Lamiums offer a wide range of color for the garden palette due to the variety in both blooms and foliage.
Flowers appear from frost to midsummer in pink, white, yellow or purple. Taking a close look at the blossom, you will notice a two-lipped flower with the upper lip curving like a helmet. From green to silvery gray, the toothed leaves may be edged or striped in white or pale green.
Spreading by rhizomes, Lamium can reach up to 3 feet wide and 4 – 18 inches high, some growing more rampant than others depending on species and growing conditions. Hardy up to 7,500 feet, plant this groundcover in partial to full shade. Lamium will grow vigorously when given rich, well drained soil and higher than average water. Even so, it will tolerate lesser conditions. Shear back after flowering to keep it compact.
Use this plant in woodland and shade garden with Coralbells (Heuchera spp.) or Perennial Forget-me-not (Brunnera macrophylla). It can even be planted in hanging baskets.
Contributed by Joan Nusbaum, Colorado Master Gardener. For information, contact the Master Gardener Help Desk at 719.636.8921 or CSUmg2@elpasoco.com
Photo courtesy of Leslie Holzmann.