SWEET WOODRUFF

FAMILY: Rubiaceae | GENUS: GALIUM odoratum

TYPE
  • Perennials
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Partial Shade
  • Full Shade
WATER
  • Regular Water
  • Ample Water
PLANTING ZONES
  • US (Upper South) / Zone 6
  • MS (Middle South) / Zone 7
  • LS (Lower South) / Zone 8

Plant Details

Attractive, low-spreading perennial that brings to mind deep-shaded woods. Slender, square stems 612 in. high are encircled every inch or so by whorls of six to eight aromatic, bristle-tipped leaves. Clusters of tiny white flowers show above foliage in late spring and summer. Leaves and stems give off a fragrant, haylike odor when dried; they are used to make May wine.

In the shade garden, sweet woodruff is best used as ground cover or edging. Will spread rapidly in rich soil with abundant moisture; can become a pest if allowed to grow unchecked. Self-sows freely. Increase by division in fall or spring. Give full shade in Lower South. Rarely browsed by deer.

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