Bugleweed, Ajuga: “Hugging Carpet”
Ground covers are an essential component of garden design. I always suggest that unifying a garden bed is critical and can be achieved by planting a trustworthy ground cover. And by trustworthy, I mean one that quickly spreads, is attractive year round, smothers weeds, and maybe even handles sun and shade. What on earth satisfies all this? Ajuga, my friends.
Please read on to learn more:
Ajuga is an evergreen perennials that forms a low and dense carpet-like mass and produces towers of either blue, pink, or white flowers. A solution to those tricky dappled-sun areas of the garden, Ajuga performs like an adaptable friend.
- Tuck six-packs of Ajuga between pavers, into rock walls, or in the front row of perennial beds, to create an especially charming backdrop in woodland, cottage, and Asian gardens. I even plant Ajuga in containers as a bold foliage element.
- Blooms in the late spring and summer and attracts butterflies.
- Ajuga’s flowers make surprisingly good cut flowers.
- Being resilient but small in stature, Ajuga looks good in a foreground and pairs well with Heuchera, Acorus, and small ferns.
Keep It Alive
- Plant Ajuga…everywhere—in the sun, part sun, or shade. Just provide well-draining soil.
- Give Ajuga regular water the first season to establish a deep root system, and more in hot weather. Though Ajuga can successfully compete with tree roots, I would admit this plant likes moisture.
- While some sources say deer-resistant, I have seen hungry deer give this plant an unattractive crew cut. And speaking of “pruning,” remove spent flowers as needed.
N.B.: Looking to add other plants to your garden? Our Garden Design 101 guides can help: