Periwinkle, also known as Vinca, is a charming and easy-to-grow plant that adds beauty to any garden.

With its captivating blue or purple flowers and glossy evergreen leaves, periwinkle is a versatile plant that can thrive in various conditions.

Whether you want to cover the ground, prevent weeds, or add color to a shady corner, periwinkle is a great choice. Let’s explore how to grow and care for periwinkle.

Annual Vegetative Calendar for Periwinkle

Periwinkle, known for its glossy evergreen leaves and starry flowers, is a popular ground cover that thrives with minimal care. Here’s an annual vegetative calendar tailored for Periwinkle care.

Spring

MonthTasksDescription
MarchPruningTrim back any overgrown or frost-damaged areas to encourage fresh growth.
Soil PreparationCheck soil moisture and drainage. Periwinkle thrives in well-draining soil with moderate moisture.
AprilPlantingIdeal time to plant or transplant periwinkle. Ensure it’s placed in a location with partial to full shade.
WateringBegin regular watering if the spring is particularly dry, keeping the soil consistently moist.
MayMulchingApply a light layer of mulch to retain soil moisture and suppress weeds.

Summer

MonthTasksDescription
JunePest MonitoringCheck for pests such as aphids and treat any infestations early to prevent spread.
JulyWateringContinue regular watering, especially during dry spells. Periwinkle is drought-tolerant once established.
AugustFertilizationApply a balanced, slow-release fertilizer sparingly to encourage growth if necessary.

Fall

MonthTasksDescription
SeptemberContinued CareContinue watering and monitoring for pests. Enjoy the late blooms that often appear in cooler temperatures.
OctoberPreparing for DormancyReduce watering as the plant begins to go dormant. No fertilization is needed.
NovemberCleanupRemove any fallen leaves or debris to keep the area tidy and reduce the risk of pests and diseases.

Winter

MonthTasksDescription
DecemberProtectionIn colder regions, ensure periwinkle is well-mulched to protect against freezing temperatures.
JanuaryRest PeriodPeriwinkle is dormant during this time. Minimal care is needed, just ensure the area is not waterlogged.
FebruaryEarly Spring PrepBegin to prepare for spring care. Inspect the health of your periwinkle and plan for any necessary maintenance.

Caring for periwinkle involves regular maintenance tasks such as watering, mulching, and pest management, along with seasonal adjustments in care to ensure healthy growth and vibrant blooms. By following this vegetative calendar, you can enjoy the beauty of periwinkle as a ground cover in your garden throughout the year.

Adjust care routines as needed based on your local climate conditions and the specific needs of your periwinkle.

How to Grow Periwinkle

  • Planting Periwinkle: Periwinkle is a tough and resilient plant that can thrive in different soils and situations. The most common types of periwinkle are lesser periwinkle (Vinca minor) and greater periwinkle (Vinca major). Lesser periwinkle is usually the best choice for gardens, as it forms neat mats of growth and keeps weeds at bay. Space the plants between 30-50 cm apart, depending on the size and desired coverage.
  • Caring for Periwinkle: Once established, periwinkle is drought-resistant and requires little care. After planting, remove tall weeds in the area to prevent competition. Periwinkle grows well in both sun and shade, but it flowers more freely in good light. It can adapt to a range of soil types, including sandy, loamy, or clay soils, as long as the soil is well-drained. Water the plants regularly, especially during dry periods.
  • Propagation: Periwinkle can be propagated through stem cuttings or division. Stem cuttings can be taken in spring or early summer. Remove a 10-15 cm long cutting from a healthy plant, remove the lower leaves, and plant the cutting in moist soil. Division involves separating an established plant into smaller sections and replanting them.
  • Controlling Periwinkle: While periwinkle is a useful ground cover, it can become invasive if not managed properly. Greater periwinkle, in particular, is extremely vigorous and can quickly spread. To control its growth, regularly prune or trim the shoots to prevent them from rooting where they touch the ground. Keep an eye on its spread and remove any unwanted shoots promptly.

Where to Grow Periwinkle

Periwinkle is a versatile plant that can thrive in various locations in your garden.

It can grow in both sun and shade, but it will flower more abundantly in good light.

Periwinkle is one of the few plants that can tolerate shade, making it an excellent choice for areas with limited sunlight.

It can cover bare spots, grow under trees, or add color to shady corners.

Whether you have poor or stony ground, a rough bank, or a border with other plants, periwinkle can adapt to different conditions.

  • Sun: Periwinkle can grow in full sun, but in hot summer areas, it prefers partial shade to protect it from scorching.
  • Shade: Periwinkle thrives in shade and can add vibrant color to dark areas where other plants struggle to grow. It’s an excellent choice for tricky, shady corners or under the canopy of trees.
  • Soil: Periwinkle can grow in a range of soil types, including sandy, loamy, or clay soils. It prefers well-drained soil but can tolerate different conditions. Ensure the soil is moist but not waterlogged.

Remember to consider the specific type of periwinkle you are growing and its growth habits to determine the best location in your garden.

How to Plant and Care for Periwinkle Plants

Whether you want to cover the ground to prevent weeds or add color to awkward spots, periwinkles can be a wonderful choice.

The most common types of periwinkle are lesser periwinkle (Vinca minor) and greater periwinkle (Vinca major), each with its own characteristics and considerations.

We’ll explore how to plant and care for periwinkle plants, ensuring their successful growth and longevity in your garden.

How to Plant Periwinkle

When planting periwinkle, it’s important to choose the right location and prepare the soil properly.

Here are three steps to get you started:

  1. Select the perfect spot: Periwinkles can thrive in various aspects, from full sun to shade. However, they will flower more abundantly in good light. If you’re planting them in shade, they are one of the few plants that can thrive in such conditions. Consider the growth habits and height of the periwinkle variety you choose, and plan accordingly.
  2. Prepare the soil: Periwinkles are adaptable and can grow in different soil types, including sandy, loamy, or clay soils. The key is to ensure the soil is well-drained. Before planting, add compost, fertilizers, and peat moss to improve soil nutrition and drainage.
  3. Plant with care: Space the periwinkle plants between 30-50 cm apart, depending on their size at purchase and how quickly you want to cover the ground. Ensure there is enough space for them to spread and grow. If you’re planting periwinkles among other flowers, it’s best to choose bulbous plants like tulips as companions.

How to Care for Periwinkle

Once your periwinkle plants are in the ground, proper care will ensure their health and vigor.

Here are some essential tips for caring for periwinkles:

  • Watering: Periwinkles are relatively drought-resistant once established, but they will benefit from regular watering during dry periods. Water deeply, allowing the soil to soak up the moisture, but avoid overwatering to prevent root rot.
  • Weed control: Periwinkles are effective at shading out future weed growth once established. However, it’s important to remove any tall weeds in the area before planting. Regular weeding during the early stages will help keep the periwinkle area weed-free.
  • Pruning: Periwinkles rarely require extensive pruning. However, you can trim them back to encourage new growth and maintain their desired shape. Pruning can be done in early spring or after the blooming period.
  • Fertilizing: Periwinkles are generally low-maintenance and don’t require frequent fertilization. However, if your soil is lacking in nutrients, you can apply a balanced fertilizer during the growing season. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the proper dosage and application method.
  • Managing spread: Greater periwinkle (Vinca major) has a more vigorous growth habit and can become invasive if not managed properly. To control its spread, regularly monitor the plant and remove any long shoots that root where they touch the ground. Lesser periwinkle (Vinca minor) is usually a better choice for gardens, as it forms neat mats of growth that keep weeds at bay.

By following these planting and care guidelines, you can enjoy the beauty and benefits of periwinkle plants in your garden.

Periwinkle Pruning and Propagation

Periwinkle, also known as Vinca, is a beautiful flowering plant that can bring color and texture to your garden.

Pruning and propagation are important aspects of caring for periwinkle plants, ensuring their health and promoting new growth.

Now, we will explore how to prune periwinkle plants and how to propagate them through various methods.

How to Prune Periwinkle

Pruning periwinkle is essential for maintaining its shape, controlling its growth, and promoting flowering.

Here are three steps to guide you:

  1. Timing: The best time to prune periwinkle is in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. This allows the plant to recover and produce new foliage and flowers during the growing season.
  2. Tools: Use sharp and clean pruning shears or scissors to make clean cuts. Sterilizing the tools before use helps prevent the spread of diseases or pests.
  3. Pruning Technique: Start by removing any dead, damaged, or diseased stems and leaves. Then, selectively prune back the overgrown or straggly stems to maintain a compact and tidy appearance. Cut just above a leaf node or branching point to encourage new growth.

How to Propagate Periwinkle

Propagating periwinkle is a great way to expand your plant collection or share it with others.

Here are some methods you can use to propagate periwinkle:

  1. Seed Propagation: Periwinkle can be propagated from seeds, but this method requires patience and time. Sow the seeds directly into well-draining soil in late spring or early summer. Keep the soil consistently moist, and seedlings should emerge in a few weeks.
  2. Stem Cuttings: Propagating periwinkle from stem cuttings is a popular and effective method. Take 4-6 inch cuttings from healthy, non-flowering stems. Remove the lower leaves and dip the cut end in rooting hormone. Plant the cuttings in a pot filled with a mixture of perlite and peat moss. Place the pot in a warm area with indirect sunlight and keep the soil moist. After a few weeks, the cuttings should develop roots.
  3. Layering: Layering is another propagation technique that works well for periwinkle. Select a long, trailing stem and gently bend it towards the ground. Make a shallow cut on the stem where it touches the soil, and secure it in place using a small stake or rock. Keep the soil moist, and roots will develop at the cut area. Once the roots are established, you can separate the new plant from the parent plant.

By pruning and propagating periwinkle, you can maintain the health and vigor of your plants while also expanding your garden.

Periwinkle Pests and Diseases

Periwinkle plants can sometimes be susceptible to various pests and diseases that can affect their health and appearance.

It’s important for gardeners to be aware of these potential issues and take appropriate measures to prevent and manage them.

In this section, we will explore common pests and diseases that can affect periwinkle plants.

Common Pests and Diseases

Periwinkle plants can be affected by a range of pests and diseases.

These can include insect pests, fungal diseases, and other issues that can impact the overall health and vitality of the plants.

Here are some of the common pests and diseases that can affect periwinkle:

  • Spider Mites: These tiny arachnids can infest periwinkle plants, causing damage by sucking sap from the leaves. Spider mite infestations can lead to yellowing, wilting, and distorted growth of the leaves.
  • Aphids: These small, soft-bodied insects can cluster on the leaves and stems of periwinkle plants, feeding on sap. Aphid infestations can cause leaf curling, stunted growth, and the production of sticky honeydew.
  • Slugs and Snails: These mollusks can feed on the leaves and stems of periwinkle plants, leaving behind large holes and causing significant damage. They are often active during moist conditions and can be controlled through various methods such as handpicking or using natural repellents.
  • Powdery Mildew: This fungal disease can appear as a powdery white coating on the leaves of periwinkle plants. It can inhibit photosynthesis, leading to reduced plant vigor and growth. Powdery mildew thrives in humid conditions and can be managed by improving air circulation and using fungicidal sprays if necessary.
  • Root Rot: Excessive moisture and poorly drained soil can lead to root rot in periwinkle plants. This fungal disease causes the roots to decay, resulting in wilting, yellowing, and stunted growth. Proper watering practices and well-draining soil can help prevent root rot.
  • Leaf Spot: Leaf spot diseases can manifest as circular or irregular spots on the leaves of periwinkle plants. These spots may be brown, black, or tan in color and can cause defoliation and weakened plants. Fungicidal sprays and maintaining good sanitation practices can help manage leaf spot.
  • Viral Diseases: Periwinkle plants can be susceptible to viral infections, which can cause leaf mottling, stunted growth, and overall decline. Viral diseases are usually spread by pests or through contaminated tools, so practicing good hygiene and pest control is essential.
  • Deer and Rabbit Damage: Deer and rabbits are known to feed on periwinkle plants, causing extensive damage to the foliage. Using physical barriers or repellents can help protect the plants from these herbivores.

By being vigilant and implementing appropriate pest and disease management strategies, gardeners can ensure the health and vitality of their periwinkle plants.

Buying Periwinkle Seeds

Periwinkle seeds are a great option for gardeners looking to grow these lovely plants from scratch.

Whether you’re planning to add periwinkle to your garden, window boxes, or pots, buying quality seeds is crucial.

Here, we will explore advice on buying periwinkle seeds and where you can purchase them online.

Advice On Buying Periwinkle Seeds

When it comes to buying periwinkle seeds, there are a few factors to consider to ensure you’re getting the best quality seeds for successful germination and healthy plant growth.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Seed Potency: Look for seeds with high potency, preferably around 90% or higher. Higher potency seeds have a better chance of germinating and producing vigorous plants. However, keep in mind that no warranty is typically provided for the productiveness of the seeds.
  • Variety Selection: Consider the specific variety of periwinkle you want to grow. There are different types available, such as Vinca minor (Common Periwinkle) and Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar Periwinkle), each with its unique characteristics and growing requirements. Choose a variety that suits your preferences and gardening conditions.
  • Reliable Sellers: Purchase periwinkle seeds from reputable sellers or online platforms that specialize in gardening supplies. Look for sellers with positive reviews and a track record of delivering quality products. This will help ensure the authenticity and viability of the seeds you’re purchasing.

Where to Buy Periwinkle Seeds Online

When it comes to buying periwinkle seeds online, there are several reliable platforms where you can find a variety of options.

Here are some suggestions:

  • The Garden Store (thegardenstore.sg): They offer Vinca Rosy Periwinkle seeds, which are delightful erect bushy plants with glossy Laurel-like leaves. These robust plants produce sparkling white and pink blooms, making them an attractive addition to pots, window boxes, or garden displays. The seeds are easy to grow and thrive under hot conditions.
  • Amazon (amazon.com): Amazon offers a range of periwinkle seeds from various sellers. You can find different options by searching for “periwinkle seeds.” Make sure to check the product details and customer reviews to ensure you’re getting the desired variety and quality.
  • Carousell Singapore (carousell.sg): Carousell is an online marketplace where individuals can sell their products, including plants and seeds. You can find affordable periwinkle options by searching for “periwinkle” in the Plants & Seeds category. Take note of the sellers’ ratings and descriptions to make an informed purchase.
  • eBay (ebay.com.sg): eBay is another platform where you can find periwinkle seeds. Search for “periwinkle seeds” to browse through the available options. Pay attention to the seller’s ratings, product details, and shipping information before making a purchase.
  • Park Seed (parkseed.com): Park Seed offers a selection of vinca seeds, including both Vinca minor and Catharanthus roseus varieties. They provide adaptable, versatile, and classically beautiful flowers that thrive in various conditions. Check their website for specific vinca seed options and growing tips.
  • Amazon Canada (amazon.ca): If you’re located in Canada, you can find periwinkle seeds on Amazon.ca. Search for “periwinkle seeds” to explore the available options. Check the delivery dates and customer reviews to ensure a smooth purchasing experience.

Remember to review the product details, customer reviews, and seller reputations before making a purchase decision.

It’s essential to choose seeds from reliable sources to increase the chances of successful germination and healthy plant growth.

Buying Periwinkle Plants

Periwinkle plants are beautiful and versatile additions to any garden or landscape.

Whether you’re looking to use them as groundcover, container plants, or for their charming flowers, buying periwinkle plants requires some considerations.

We will provide advice on buying periwinkle plants and suggest where you can purchase them online.

Advice On Buying Periwinkle Plants

When purchasing periwinkle plants, there are a few factors to keep in mind to ensure you select healthy and suitable specimens.

Here are some tips:

  • Variety Selection: Periwinkle plants come in various species and colors, such as Vinca minor (Common Periwinkle) and Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar Periwinkle). Consider the specific variety that meets your aesthetic preferences and growing conditions.
  • Quality and Health: Look for periwinkle plants that have vibrant foliage, without any signs of discoloration, wilting, or pest damage. Check the overall health of the plants, including the roots, to ensure they are in good condition.
  • Growing Requirements: Understand the specific growing requirements of the periwinkle variety you choose. Periwinkles generally prefer well-draining soil, moderate water, and different levels of sunlight depending on the species. Select plants that are suitable for your garden’s conditions.

Where to Buy Periwinkle Plants Online

If you’re interested in buying periwinkle plants online, there are several reputable sources where you can find a variety of options.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Noah Garden Centre (noahgardencentre.com.sg): They offer a wide selection of plants and pots, including periwinkle plants. Explore their website to find periwinkle plants that suit your needs and preferences.
  • Garden Goods Direct (gardengoodsdirect.com): They have periwinkle plants available for purchase online. Their offerings include Vinca minor, which is a popular groundcover plant for shade. Check their website for specific periwinkle plant options.
  • Carousell Singapore (carousell.sg): Carousell is an online marketplace where individuals can sell plants and seeds. Search for “periwinkle” in the Plants & Seeds category to find affordable periwinkle plants from various sellers in Singapore.
  • Nature Hills Nursery (naturehills.com): Nature Hills Nursery offers periwinkle plants, also known as vinca, which are ideal as groundcover. They provide a variety of colors and sizes to choose from. Visit their website for more information.
  • TN Nursery (tnnursery.net): TN Nursery offers periwinkle plants, specifically Vinca minor, also known as Common Periwinkle. These plants are praised for their beauty, versatility, and ability to provide groundcover in various settings.

Remember to review the product descriptions, customer reviews, and seller ratings before making a purchase decision.

Choose healthy periwinkle plants from reputable sources to ensure their successful establishment and growth in your garden.

Periwinkle Varieties

Periwinkles, also known as vinca or myrtle, encompass various species and cultivars that offer vibrant colors and versatility in garden beds, containers, and hanging baskets.

These low-growing evergreen plants are valued for their glossy foliage and charming star-shaped flowers. In this section, we will explore different periwinkle varieties and their characteristics.

Periwinkle Varieties to Grow

  • Alba (Vinca minor): This variety features white blooms and small leaves. While it may not flower as abundantly as other types, it has a delicate beauty. There is also a double-flower version known as Alba Plena, although it is less common to find commercially.
  • Atropurpurea (Vinca minor): Commonly referred to as Wine Vinca, this periwinkle variety showcases large burgundy blooms. It blooms sporadically from April to September, adding a touch of rich color to your garden. It has a vining growth habit and can spread up to 12 inches wide, making it suitable for borders or planting at the base of shrubs.
  • Aureovariegata (Vinca minor): This variety boasts gold or yellow variegated foliage, blue flowers, and a yellow edge on each leaf. It is ideal for smaller areas and exhibits a trailing growth habit without aggressive spreading.
  • Madagascar Periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus): This perennial shrub, also known as the Old World periwinkle or rosary periwinkle, produces fragrant white or pink flowers. It grows up to 3 feet tall and has been traditionally used as an herbal remedy for various ailments.
  • Bigleaf Periwinkle (Vinca major): With glossy green leaves that are oval to heart-shaped, this evergreen subshrub can reach up to 1.5 meters in length. It features blue funnel-shaped flowers and is more aggressive in growth compared to Vinca minor.
  • Variegated Periwinkle (Vinca major variegata): This evergreen perennial plant showcases glossy, dark green foliage with creamy white edges. It produces small lavender-blue star-shaped flowers, adding visual interest to your garden.
  • Trailing Periwinkle (Vinca difformis): Native to Europe but found in many parts of the United States, this ground-covering evergreen vine exhibits glossy deep green leaves. It thrives in various growing conditions and provides excellent coverage for slopes or areas requiring erosion control.
  • Variegated Madagascar Periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus variegata): This frost-sensitive shrub features variegated foliage and is commonly grown as an annual in colder climates. It adds a striking visual element with its unique foliage pattern.

Remember to consider the specific growing requirements and characteristics of each periwinkle variety to ensure they thrive in your garden.

Whether you prefer the delicate blooms of Vinca minor or the vibrant hues of Catharanthus roseus, periwinkle varieties offer a range of options to enhance your outdoor space.

FAQs

What is periwinkle?

Periwinkle, also known as Vinca, is a low-growing ground cover plant that is known for its glossy evergreen leaves and charming blue or purple flowers. It is a resilient and low-maintenance plant that can thrive in various environments.

When is the best time to plant periwinkle?

Periwinkle can be planted in the spring or fall, but it is best to avoid planting during the hottest months of summer. It can thrive in a variety of soil and sunlight conditions, but it prefers partial shade and well-draining soil.

How do I plant periwinkle?

Periwinkle can be planted from cuttings, nursery transplants, or seedlings. Before planting, make sure the area is free of weeds and other plants. Dig a hole that is slightly larger than the root ball, and place the plant in the hole. Fill the hole with soil and water thoroughly. Space plants at least 12 to 18 inches apart.

What kind of soil does periwinkle prefer?

Periwinkle prefers well-draining soil that is slightly acidic to neutral. It can tolerate a range of soil types, including sandy, loamy, and clay soils. Adding compost or well-rotted manure can improve the soil’s fertility and structure.

How much sunlight does a periwinkle need?

Periwinkle prefers partial shade, but it can tolerate full sun or full shade. Too much sun can cause the leaves to wilt, while too much shade can result in leggy growth and fewer flowers. Plant periwinkle in a location that receives partial shade for optimal growth.

How often should I water periwinkle?

Periwinkle prefers consistently moist soil, but it can tolerate some drought. Water the plant deeply when the top inch of soil feels dry. Avoid overwatering, as it can lead to root rot. Mulching around the plants can help retain moisture and suppress weed growth.

Does periwinkle require fertilization?

Periwinkle is not a heavy feeder, but it can benefit from a balanced fertilizer application in early spring. Use a slow-release fertilizer or organic compost to provide nutrients to the plants. Avoid over-fertilizing, as it can result in excessive foliage growth and fewer flowers.

How do I care for periwinkle during the growing season?

Regularly check for pests and diseases, such as aphids, spider mites, and powdery mildew. Remove any damaged or diseased leaves or flowers. Prune the plant back in the fall to promote bushier growth and prevent it from becoming too leggy.

Are there any common problems or pests with periwinkle?

Periwinkle can be susceptible to various pests and diseases, including aphids, spider mites, and powdery mildew. Regularly inspect the plants for any signs of infestation or disease and take appropriate measures, such as using insecticidal soap or fungicides.

Can periwinkle be invasive?

Periwinkle can be invasive in some areas, as it spreads by underground stems called rhizomes and can form dense mats of vegetation. To prevent it from becoming invasive, plant it in a contained area or use a barrier to prevent it from spreading beyond its intended area.

Additional Resources

Here are some valuable resources that provide information on how to grow and care for periwinkle:

We hope that these resources provide you with useful tips and guidance on growing and caring for periwinkle.