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The Plant Guide

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Japanese spurge

Pachysandra terminalis

pak-ih-SAN-drah ter-min-AL-iss Audio

This plant has leathery, evergreen dark green foliage with slightly indented margins. It reaches about 8 to 10 inches tall and bears tiny white male flowers. It spreads by rhizomes, eventually forming a mat at least 2 inches thick. Cultivars offer more compact form with smaller, finely toothed leaves (‘Green Carpet’) or glossy dark green leaves (‘Green Sheen’).

Noteworthy CharacteristicsA native of Japan, it is useful as a groundcover in a shrub border or in mass in the woodland garden. It may escape into lawns or nearby natural areas.

CareGrow in any soil, except very dry.

PropagationDivide in spring. Root softwood cuttings in early summer.

ProblemsLeaf spot, dieback, and stem rot. May be damaged by slugs and snails.

  • Genus : Pachysandra
  • Zones : 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
  • Plant Height : 6 to 12 inches
  • Moisture : Adaptable
  • Growth Rate : Fast
  • Uses : Ground Covers
  • Maintenance : Low
  • Light : Partial Shade to Full Shade
  • Plant Type : Perennials
  • Characteristics : Showy Foliage
  • Bloom Time : Spring
  • Flower Color : White
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