I Love This Plant: Liriope

Liriope (aka Lilyturf, aka Monkey Grass) is a sturdy drought tolerant and almost maintenance free plant that is often used in landscaping especially along borders between grass and planting beds as it is similar to long grass in foliage and very forgiving in transitioning between the two.  Liriope (pronounced li-rye-oh-pee or leery-ope) has a large range of hardiness – zones 6-11, takes sun or shade, and is very drought tolerant.  It is not a heavy feeder and does not need trimming although cutting back old foliage in March is advised but not necessary.  This time of year is when liriope shines with beautiful purple stalks of flowers that in good years cover the plant.  This year they are sparse but determined after our drought and subsequent water restrictions.  The variety shown here is a variegated version but I also have Liriope Muscari growing in the front landscape.  Liriope Muscari is a somewhat larger variety with dark green leaves and larger blue-ish lavender flower stalks.  Both varieties will set large blackish blue berries which the birds feed on through the winter.  Migrating butterflies appreciate the late season flowers.  No wonder it is so popular in landscaping.

BTW – at the end of the season, don’t cut down your last round of cone flowers.
The flower heads will dry and provide winter interest and the birds especially finches love the seeds.  You might even have some seedlings to share this next spring!

Tadpole update: It has been raining all day so the tads are very active.  There is quite a range of size some being 2-3 times their size as of 3 weeks ago and some showing little to no growth.  Wonder what that means?

Fruitful Gardening and remember to “bee” positive!


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