Alyssum is a dense herbaceous annual with a trailing habit of growth, eventually spilling over the edges of hanging baskets and containers. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.
This plant will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and should not require much pruning, except when necessary, such as to remove dieback. It is a good choice for attracting bees and butterflies to your yard, but is not particularly attractive to deer who tend to leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Alyssum is recommended for the following landscape applications:
- Mass Planting
- Rock/Alpine Gardens
- Border Edging
- General Garden Use
- Hanging Baskets
Alyssum is bathed in stunning clusters of fragrant star-shaped flowers at the ends of the stems from mid spring to mid fall. Its tiny narrow leaves remain grayish green in color throughout the season.
Planting and Growing
Alyssum will grow to be about 9 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 12 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 10 inches apart. Its foliage tends to remain low and dense right to the ground. This fast-growing annual will normally live for one full growing season, needing replacement the following year.
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH, and is able to handle environmental salt. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by cuttings; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
Alyssum is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in hanging baskets. Because of its trailing habit of growth, it is ideally suited for use as a 'spiller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the edges where it can spill gracefully over the pot. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.