How to Grow Japanese Spurge (Pachysandra Terminalis, Pachysandra Procumbens)

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Japanese spurge is a low-maintenance ground cover that's ideal for shade. It features short spikes of white flowers followed by red berries. Japanese spurge thrives in USDA zones 5 to 9.

Things You'll Need

  • Fertilizers
  • Garden Hoses
  • Garden Spades
  • Mulch
  • Plants
  • Seeds
  • Shovels
  • Look for plants at nurseries in spring and summer, or year-round in warmer climates.

  • Choose healthy-looking plants with signs of new growth in leaves and flower buds. Buy Japanese spurge in 4-inch to 1-gallon containers.

  • Choose a site in shade with well-drained soil.

  • Dig a hole for each plant no deeper than the plants were growing in the containers; space the holes 1 foot apart.

  • Add a light application of organic fertilizer to the planting holes before setting the plants in.

  • Mulch around but not on top of the plants with 3 inches of organic compost.

  • Water well until soil is completely moist, weekly during the first year and also in summers with no rainfall.

Tips & Warnings

  • Japanese spurge grows about 1 foot high and spreads slowly by underground stems called rhizomes.
  • A similar plant, Allegheny spurge (Pachysandra procumbens) is native to the eastern United States and is more evergreen.

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