How to Care for a Plumbago Plant

Overview

Plumbago, also known as leadwort, is a genus consisting of 20 different species of flowering perennial shrubs native to temperate and tropical regions across the world. Plumbago plants produce flowers in late spring that can be blue, red or white in color. Plants typically grow to about 5 feet in height and are easy to grow in most temperate regions with only minimal care.

Step 1

Plant plumbago during early spring in a location that receives full sunlight throughout the day and has fertile, well-drained soil. Spread 1 inch of organic compost over the planting site and use a garden tiller to incorporate it into the soil.

Step 2

Spread a 2-inch layer of mulch over the soil surrounding the plumbago plant. Start the band of mulch at least 3 inches from the crown to allow air circulation and room for growth. Replenish the mulch as necessary throughout the year.

Step 3

Water plumbago plant twice per week during the first year of growth. Reduce frequency of watering to once per week after the plant has become established. Do not allow standing water to collect or the roots can rot.

Step 4

Feed plumbago with a balanced 10-10-10 NPK fertilizer three times per year. Apply once during early spring, again in mid-summer and one final time in early fall. Follow the instructions provided on the package for proper dosage and application.

Step 5

Remove any dead or fading flowers from plumbago plants as soon as possible to encourage additional blooms. Pinch the flowers off close to the stem to minimize damage. Allow some flowers to turn to seed if self-propagation is desired.

Things You'll Need

  • Organic compost
  • Tiller
  • Mulch
  • Fertilizer

References

  • The University of Georgia Cooperative Extension: Perennial Plumbago
  • Washington State University Plant of the Month: Dwarf Plumbago, Leadwort
  • Texas A&M University Department of Horticulture Texas Superstar: Plumbago
Keywords: plumbago, plumbago plants, leadwort

About this Author

Willow Sidhe is a freelance writer living in the beautiful Hot Springs, AR. She is a certified aromatherapist with a background in herbalism. She has extensive experience gardening, with a specialty in indoor plants and herbs. Sidhe's work has been published on numerous Web sites, including Gardenguides.com.