How to plant creeping phlox

Landscape design for a garden of perennial flowers wouldn’t be complete without groundcover like creeping phlox, which reaches about 6 inches tall. Use creeping phlox, which is also known as trailing phlox, as a garden border, to soften the edge of a walkway, on a hill side to help control erosion, or in planters where the phlox will trail over the edge of the container. Creeping phlox is cold hardy in USDA planting zones 2 through 9. This evergreen plant, whose botanical name is Phlox subulata, produces nickel size blooms in the spring in colors of lavender, white with pink stripe, shades of pink, or white. Above picture was taken in mid-spring.

Creeping 'Blue Emerald' phlox shown trailing over a flower box.
Planting Creeping Phlox

Choose a sunny location in your landscape to plant creeping phlox. Look for a location where water does not stand after a rainfall. Dig the area down at least 6 inches to loosen the soil for better root penetration and better drainage. If planting in clay soil, adding organic matter, like decaying leaves, can improve soil conditions. Use a hand spade or your fingers to create an opening in the soil to plant creeping phlox. Water immediately after planting, which will force out air pockets and settle the soil around the plant. Spread about 2 inches of mulch, like pine chips, around the flower if desired. Mulch helps to retain moisture and block weed growth. When planting multiple creeping phlox in the same area, set the plants about 12 inches apart. The flower will spread to fill the void.

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