6 Detailed Highly Effective Tips on Growing
Many gardeners appreciate ground covers as practical alternatives to turfgrass. Used under
trees and shrubs, and ground covers eliminate the tedious necessity of mowing and trimming grass around and under these plants.
Trees and shrubs can also benefit from shallow-rooted ground covers that break up the soil and increase porosity and organic content.
In this article, we intend to share our research experiences with one of the popular ground covers.
Pachysandra is a widely cultivated ground cover in today’s landscape. Commonly known as Japanese spurge or Japanese pachysandra, P. terminalis is an evergreen, semi-woody subshrub that reaches six to 12 inches tall and spreads indefinitely by underground
It is native to Japan and is hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8. The shiny, dark, evergreen leaves are grouped in whorls at the ends of stems.
In the landscape, it can be used on a moderate to large scale under trees, around shrubs, near walkways, and around building foundations.
While the plants are grown mainly for their foliage, the male flowers are pleasantly fragrant
and spike-like, giving rise to the generic name pachysandra, which comes from the Greek
pachys (thick) and Andros (masculine) in reference to the thick stamens.
The second part of the Latin name, terminalis, implies that the flowers are borne
terminally (at the ends of the stems).
Pachysandra Growing Tips
Because it is frequently cultivated as clonal species, seeds are rarely used for planting.
Rather than that, pachysandra is propagated via bare-root stem cuttings, which can be purchased at your local garden center.
How to grow pachysandra is described below.
Select a planting area. Select a shady location for your plant, as direct sunlight can cause the leaves to burn.
It can also be grown successfully in partial shade, but it thrives in areas with plenty of trees.
Make sure your soil is prepared. Pachysandra prefers slightly acidic soil. Adjust the pH of your soil to between 5.5 and 6.5. Pachysandra thrives in almost any soil type as long as it drains well.
Establish your cuttings. Plant your pachysandra on a cloudy day to avoid the sun. Dig holes four to five inches deep and six inches in diameter for your cuttings.
Because it spreads horizontally, space your planting holes six to twelve inches apart. Cover with soil and then thoroughly water.
Five Tips for Caring for Pachysandra
Pachysandra is a low-maintenance and easy-to-grow ground cover, but you may want to follow the following growing tips to ensure its success.
1. Water regularly. It requires regular watering until the roots establish. Avoid excessive watering, which can result in root rot.
2. Inspect the area for pests and disease. This plant is generally resistant to pests and disease, though leaf blight is a concern. Volutella blight, also known as leaf blight, wreaks havoc on your pachysandra plants’ foliage and stems.
3. To treat the blight disease, you can apply a fungicide to the plants.
4. It is also susceptible to scale, which resembles aphids and can be controlled with insecticidal soap.
Once a year, fertilize your ground cover. It is a low-maintenance plant, but you can apply an organic fertilizer approximately once a year to balance the soil’s nutrients.
5. Pruning shrubs Before the new growing season begins, prune your pachysandra plant with a pair of clean shears.
Additionally, you can clip the plant’s tips in the spring to promote air circulation and dense growth.
6. Mulch. Mulching the base surroundings of the plant with biological matter can benefit in retaining moisture and provide additional ground cover to smother weeds.
- Get freshly matured shoot tip cuttings from stock plants in a stock bed.
- To produce fresh cuttings from stock plants, first cold treat plants for six weeks.
- Grow stock plants under photoperiods of 14 hours or greater.
- Bulk-rooted cuttings under photoperiods of 14 hours or greater.
- Grow plants at warm temperatures (68°F to 75°F).
- Pinch cuttings to promote the development of multiple lateral shoots.