Divide and Conquer

I spent a few moments in the front sidewalk border last evening.  I transplanted two large clumps of Liriope muscari from the back border that was destroyed in the great pool deck caper.  These two clumps were divided into 9 plants.  Here are the last 3.  The border is right on the edge of the driveway – let’s see how long they survive :/


I was able to dig the clumps out rather easily, then gently remove as much soil from the root ball as possible.  My small fork then separated the root ball and I gently pulled the small plants apart.

When transplanting, I always take the opportunity to amend that soil!  I live in an area that is mostly clay soil, so I am forever adding compost or even garden soil to the holes I dig for transplants.  Anything I add to this clay is an improvement!  I’ve worked the front border so many times – I’m always searching for the perfect plant that can tolerate direct sun for a significant majority of the day.  The sun hits the front of the house and heats the front border, on top of all that direct sun.  But not to worry – this variety of Liriope can handle both sun and shade.

There is a variety of Liriope (L. spicata) that blooms white, and is very invasive.  It multiplies by sending tough runners (even under concrete, I hear) and is very hard to get rid of, especially if planted in direct sun (read turf grass).

The Liriope I have will multiply in a contained clump, but not spread so much.  It blooms in purple, in late summer.

liriope muscari

In the late fall, I have cut it back in the past, and it comes back very nicely.  This past year, however, I neglected to cut it back, and it still survived.  The foliage from last year is a bit unsightly, but if you don’t have the gumption to be bothered with it, you don’t have to cut it back at all.  As the new growth gets taller, it covers the old very effectively.

A pretty versatile plant, Liriope is one of my favorites!