Vinca minor – Periwinkle, Creeping Myrtle, Myrtle
Vinca minor (Periwinkle) is native throughout the Eastern parts of the United States. A 1-2 inch 5-petal lavender blue flower blooms in spring on the dark green ground cover. It is a trailing vine with opposite thick elliptical leaves. It can have a solid dark green leaf, or a variegated leaf color. Variegated means a leaf has different colors and not one solid color. It is hardy zones 4-8 and an origin of Europe. A plant that is easy for beginner gardeners to include in a shade garden. It is easy to grow and easy to maintain, especially if kept within a boundary. It is adaptable to most pH levels. It prefers shade. It can tolerate deep shade to partial sunny locations, but not in hot, full sun areas. It is drought tolerate due to the thick leaves that protect the soil from drying out. It likes a well-drained compost rich woodland soil. It can spread from the rhizomes to cover areas at a medium to fast pace. It is 3-6 inches tall with a spread of 1-2 feet, but can spread further if soil is soft and rich. It provides a thick ground cover in shadier areas where soil erosion problems exists. Easy to propagate and add to other gardens. Homeowners use it to for hard to maintain areas. It adds an interesting appeal to the base of trees and around rocks. It is a perfect choice to use for a shady area that needs redesigned. Patio pavers beneath a wrought iron bench will provide a place to sit. Surround it with short walls covered in Periwinkle. The Periwinkle will cover edges of walls slightly and keep it contained to the new garden area. Add statues and planters full of bright colored flowers to complete a beautiful shade garden.