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How to Care for an Asylum Plant

By Bridget Kelly ; Updated September 21, 2017

Lobularia maritima, or sweet alyssum, is an easy to grow perennial flowering plant, grown in cooler areas of the country as an annual. In other areas it can take over a garden and drive the gardener crazy, earning it the nickname “asylum plant.” Alyssum blooms in small pom-poms of white or lavender flowers. Because they are so small, growing only to 6 inches in height, they make great filler plants for hanging basket arrangements, or between rocks in a rock garden. If planted very close together, in masses, they make a stunning, dense flowery mat. Sweet alyssum is hardy to USDA zones 4 through 9.

Plant the alyssum in a sunny location. Although they will survive in the shade, they flower better when they have at least six hours of sunlight per day.

Water the alyssum when the top inch of soil feels dry. If the weather is particularly hot and dry you may need to water more often.

Fertilize the alyssum with an all-purpose fertilizer once a month, according to the rate suggested on the fertilizer package.

 

Things You Will Need

  • All-purpose fertilizer

About the Author

 

Based in the American Southwest, Bridget Kelly has been writing about gardening and real estate since 2005. Her articles have appeared at Trulia.com, SFGate.com, GardenGuides.com, RE/MAX.com, MarketLeader.com, RealEstate.com, USAToday.com and in "Chicago Agent" magazine, to name a few. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English with a concentration in creative writing.