The perennial type of verbena (Verbena canadensis) is sometimes called rose verbena or clump verbena. A particularly striking variety of this verbena is known as "Homestead Purple," which is characterised by its deep purple flower clusters that bloom continuously from mid spring right through to fall in zones 6 to 9. This is a low-growing evergreen perennial that makes an excellent ground cover and is equally at home trailing over a wall, down a slope or in a hanging basket. Homestead purple verbenas prefer full sun and well-drained soil. They are heat and drought tolerant and they also attract butterflies.
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Things you need
- Verbena plant(s)
Choose a site in the spring with full sun and well-drained soil. Dig a hole to accommodate your verbena plant. Place the plant in the hole, spreading out the roots. Backfill with soil and compact it to remove air pockets. Water thoroughly.
Space your verbenas at least 3 feet apart if planting them in groups. When planting in hanging baskets or container pots, you need only plant one, as it will spread vigorously.
Cut back the stems to within a few inches of the main clump if the verbena starts to look leggy and scraggly.
Divide the verbenas every 3 or 4 years, in the spring or fall, by digging up the plant and separating it into two or more sections. Replant the sections in another location as in Steps 1 and 2.
Deadhead spent flowers throughout the growing season to encourage more blooms by clipping off any dead flowers.
Tips and warnings
- Too much water may result in mildew or crown rot. Likewise, if the soil becomes too dried out, verbenas may be bothered by spider mites.
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