Bugle flowers (Ajuga reptans) are also referred to as bugle-weed and carpetweed. They are low-growing, spreading perennial ground covers that are indigenous to Iran, regions in western Asia and Europe. Bugle flowers belong to the family of mint plants and produce 1/2-inch-wide, tubular-shaped flowers that come in pink, blue, purple and white colors. Plant bugle flowers in spring and provide them with good draining, fertile, moist soil.
Choose a planting site for the bugle flowers. In hotter southern climates choose a location that will offer full shade and protection from the hot midday sun. In northern cooler climates, choose a location with sun in the mornings and partial shade in the afternoons.
Turn over the soil in the planting site to a depth of 12 to 14 inches. Use a rake to sift through the soil to remove any rocks, sticks, roots or weeds which can interfere with growth.
Amend the soil in the planting site according to the type of soil. Spread out a 2- to 3-inch layer of sand or vermiculite if the soil is heavy, sticky or clay-like. If the soil is sandy and dries out quickly, spread a 3- to 4-inch layer of aged manure, dehydrated compost or peat moss over the soil in the planting site. Use a garden fork to work the amendment into the soil thoroughly.
Place plastic, metal or wooden garden edging around the perimeter of the planting site. This will prevent the bugle flowers from spreading into other areas of your garden. Read the label instructions so you will know how to use the edging. You can purchase garden edging at your local plant nursery or garden center.
Dig planting holes twice the width and approximately the same depth of the pot, if planting bugle flowers that are growing in 3- or 4-inch pots. If planting from 6-inch-wide or 1-gallon pots, dig each hole 10 inches wide by 12 inches deep. Space each hole approximately 8 inches apart for smaller varieties of bugle flowers. Space each hole 12 inches apart for larger varieties.
Remove the bugle flower from its growing container. If it is growing in a 4-inch pot, flip the pot upside down and gently separate the plant from the pot. If planting from a 1-gallon pot, cut along the sides of the pot, beginning at a drain hole, using a pair of snips. Do this all around the pot until the bugle flower can be removed from its growing container.
Plant the bugle flower into a previously dug planting hole. The top of its root system should be sitting level with the surrounding garden soil. Scoop in soil in and around the root system, gently firming it down with your hand as you proceed to fill the planting hole full with soil.
Water each of the bugle flowers thoroughly. Provide approximately 1 to 2 qt. of water if you planted from 3- or 4-inch pots. If you planted from 1-gallon or 6-inch-wide pots, water each with approximately 1 gallon of water.