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Periwinkle

 

General Information

Periwinkle (Vinca minor) is a perennial, evergreen herb with trailing stems. The shiny, dark green leaves are 2 to 3 cm long, opposite and oval shaped. The flowers are violet to blue in colour.

Growth Habit

Vinca minor is a native from southern Switzerland southward around much of the Mediterranean basin and across much of north Africa. It grows most vigorously in moist soil with only partial sun, but it will also grow in the deepest shade, even in poor soil. In the Sea to Sky, it is often found on the edges of parks and natural spaces where garden waste is illegally dumped.


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Management

By hand, pulling the above ground portion of the plant and digging out its roots.

Alternatives for planting:

  • wild ginger (Asarum caudatum)
  • smooth alumroot (Heuchera micrantha)
  • piggy-back plant (Tolmiea menziesii)
  • yerba buena (Clinopodium douglasii) – all native species that make good groundcovers and provide habitat for wildlife.

Identification

Periwinkle is an evergreen to semi-evergreen, trailing vine that reaches up to 6.6 ft. (2 m) in length. Vines can reach a height of 6 in. (15.2 cm). The stems are slender, somewhat woody, and green in color. The opposite, glossy leaves are approximately 1 in. (2.5 cm) long and narrowly elliptical in shape. Some varieties have variegated leaf colors. Flowers are violet to blue (possibly white) in color, 1 in. (2.5 cm) wide, 5-petaled and develop in the spring.

 

 

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