Lychnis ground cover prefers dry, poorer soil. Do water them when they are first planted and getting established, but water slowly so the moisture sinks into the soil. They perform best in a fully sunny position but can tolerate some shade – though may produce slightly less flowers. Deadhead regularly to encourage repeat flowering but leave spent seed heads at the end of the flowering season if you wish to encourage self-seeding. Then simply cut back in late Autumn/early Winter to one third of their height and mulch over Winter to protect the base of the plant from hard frost.
As a rough guide when planting Lychnis as ground cover – 4 plants per square metre is adequate with a little patience, 6 will give better coverage, and 9-12 will make a weed supressing carpet very quickly.
How to grow Lychnis
Position: Sun or partial shade
Soil and site: Poor/dry but well drained
Flowering time: Late Spring through to mid-late Summer
Growth rate: Moderate
Ultimate height and spread: Clump forming, so width will grow over time. Height to 80cm, spread to 45cm
Hardiness: Hardy once established
Aftercare: Water well but gently until established, avoiding soil becoming waterlogged. Leave some seed heads if you wish them to self-seed within the planting area