These super low maintenance, evergreen plants will quickly cover the soil as highly effective ground cover. The attractive ovate, dark green leaves of the less common Vinca Minor Atropurpurea (Lesser Periwinkle) emerge in pairs along the trailing stems providing very attractive winter foliage. Flowers 2.5cm wide appear over a long period from mid Spring to early Autumn. The flowers are an extremely pretty, 5-petalled, deep reddish-purple with a soft paler ring around the centre. These adorn the weed-suppressing carpet of growth to amazing effect and will also attract insects and bees.
Evergreen, and providing year-round interest, Vinca Minor Atropurpurea is the perfect versatile ground cover. Slender-stemmed and creeping, it will thrive in most areas as it will tolerate anything from full sun to dense shade under large trees (though it will flower best in full sun). Try planting under trees, in rockeries, spread over banks, or in drier areas including under the canopy of large trees where other plants may struggle. Alternatively partner with Heuchera and Hosta, or under Azaleas and Rhododendrons, or perhaps a mature Viburnum plicatum Mariesii
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This hardy little plant delivers on so many levels! Evergreen, and happy in virtually any soil, Vinca Minor Atropurpurea (Lesser Periwinkle) ground cover requires very little maintenance beyond a slight haircut or cut back when it is veering into area where you don’t want it to grow. It can be invasive as due to the creeping nature of the plant, they will self-root where the shoots land. As such they are better placed in larger, perhaps wilder areas of the garden where spreading is not a problem and they will not interfere with other planting. If the plant is looking a little shabby in winter it can be cut back to encourage new growth in spring.
How to grow Vinca Minor Atropurpurea
Position: Full sun, partial shade, full shade
Soil and site: Any
Flowering time: Late Spring through to early Autumn
Growth rate: Moderate
Ultimate height and spread: 15cm and to 50cm
Hardiness: Fully Hardy
Aftercare: Water well until established, avoiding soil becoming waterlogged. Trim in early Spring or late Autumn to maintain shape