Pachysandra Growing Instructions


Pachysandra is one of the most functional of all landscaping varieties. These fast-growing groundcover plants quickly cover and thrive in shady spots where nothing else will grow, such as under large spreading trees. Pachysandra is hardy in USDA Zones 5 through 8, and practically maintenance-free once established.

Step 1

Prepare the shady or partially shaded planting area for pachysandra in the spring when all danger of frost in your area has passed. Cultivate fertile, well-draining soil to a depth of about 5 to 7 inches. Clean out weeds, roots, rocks and debris. Rake the area to even it.

Step 2

Cover the planting site with about 1 inch of peat moss. Top that with an all-purpose slow-release fertilizer. Follow the packaging instructions carefully. Mix the amendments into the top 3 or 4 inches of the garden soil.

Step 3

Dig three 2- to 4-inch deep holes 6 to 8 inches apart to group the plants in a triangle configuration. Space groups of 3 about 12 inches apart. Plant pachysandras at the same level that they occupied in the growing flats, firming the soil well.

Step 4

Mulch the planting site about 2 or 3 inches deep with natural bark such as pine or cypress.

Step 5

Water the pachysandra bed slowly to soak it thoroughly. Soil should be evenly moist but not wet or soggy.

Step 6

Water twice weekly for 3 weeks. Thereafter water once or twice weekly for 3 or 4 months to establish the young plants well. Don't let them dry out, but they shouldn't be allowed to stand in water, either.

Step 7

Mulch again in the fall to maintain a 2- to 3-inch depth of the material.

Step 8

Trim off the tips of pachysandra stems the following spring to encourage fullness and spreading habit.

Things You'll Need

  • Peat moss
  • All-purpose slow-release fertilizer
  • Garden trowel
  • Natural bark mulch, pine or cypress


  • Do It Yourself: Caring for Pachysandra
  • Rosedale Nurseries: Growing Herbaceous Evergreen Groundcovers
  • Times Union: Pachysandra Is the Queen of Groundcover
  • Yardener: Caring for Pachysandra

Who Can Help

  • USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map
  • Ohio State University: Diseases of Ground Cover Plants
Keywords: pachysandra, groundcover, pachysandra growing instructions

About this Author

Axl J. Amistaadt began as a part-time amateur freelance writer in 1985, turned professional in 2005, and became a full-time writer in 2007. Amistaadt’s major focus is publishing material for GardenGuides. Areas of expertise include home gardening, horticulture, alternative and home remedies, pets, wildlife, handcrafts, cooking, and juvenile science experiments.