Aubrieta is a wonderful ground cover or rock garden plant. It has furry, mid-green leaves and springtime flowers in shades of white, blue, purple, or pink. The plants form spreading mats, also making them good for the front of the border.
- Common name: Aubrieta
- Botanical name: Aubrieta x cultorum
- Zones: 5 to 7
- Size: To 6 inches tall
- From: Areas of Europe and Asia
- Family: Cruciferae (cabbage family)
- Sun: Full sun
- Soil: Moist, but well-drained soil. Soils with a high clay content should be amended with organic matter before planting.
- Moisture: Water during times of drought.
- Mulch: A layer of mulch over the soil in the summer will help the soil conserve moisture and keep soil temperatures from rising too much; yarrow appreciates this.
- Pruning: Cut plants back after they freeze in autumn or before they grow in spring.
- Fertilizer: In most conditions, fertilizer is unnecessary.
- Seed: Sow seeds in a cold frame or a sheltered spot in the garden either in autumn or very early spring.
- Aphids: These small insects often appear in large numbers on new growth. Spray them off daily with a stream of water; they will not attack a plant after being knocked off. Use an insecticidal soap or neem-oil-based spray if infestations are severe.
- Leaf spot: In summer or autumn, the leaves become spotted yellowish or with darker colored spots. Each spot often has concentric rings around it, forming something of a bull's-eye pattern. To deter it, prune the plant to keep good air flow and avoid wetting the foliage in afternoons and evenings.
- Powdery mildew: This disease tends to appear in mid- to late summer and looks like someone dusted affected leaves with a grayish powdery covering. The leaves then drop off. To deter the disease, prune the plant to keep good air flow and avoid wetting the foliage in afternoons and evenings.
- In especially hot-summer area, these plants are short-lived.
- Aubrieta x cultorum ‘Bressingham Pink': Mid-green, furry foliage and clusters of double pink flowers in spring. Zones 5 to 7.
- Aubrieta x cultorum ‘Royal Velvet': Mid-green, furry foliage and clusters of large violet-purple flowers in spring. Zones 5 to 7.