Royal Purple Liriope
Easy-Care Perennial with Deep Purple Flower Spikes
Grass, Groundcover or Flowering Perennial?
Liriope is all of the above and more. The rapidly growing perennial, a relative of Mondo grass and member of the lily family, provides year-round interest in the garden and tiny lily-like flowers. And its common name of “lily turf” perfectly describes the value of liriope as a colorful, flowering groundcover.
Royal Purple Liriope has all of the fine qualities of lily turf, such as easy care, evergreen foliage and fragrant flowers all summer long and into fall. This adaptable plant also is a waterwise choice.
Adaptable to Landscape Conditions
All lily turf varieties do better in well-draining soil, and shouldn’t be over-watered by gardeners. Most liriopes can handle some hot, dry conditions. Royal Purple Liriope can tolerate drought, along with heat and high humidity. It’s also resistant to disease, especially when planted and watered as recommended.
In fact, one of the attractions of lily turf to gardeners is how the plant grows in a variety of environments. Plant Royal Purple Liriope in sun, shade or partial sun. The variety can grow in zones 5 through 10, but is more of a sure bet in zones 6 through 9. Royal Purple Liriope prefers slightly acidic soil, but also does well in neutral soil; it can survive in clay or sand, requiring little to no soil amendment before planting.
Perfect in Group Plantings
At less than a foot high and up to two feet wide, Royal Purple Liriope makes an excellent ground cover, especially when several – or dozens – of the plants are grouped together along a walkway or inside a bed. The grouping of liriope creates a grass-like cover to fill in beds and await the showy blooms as temperatures warm. It’s a superb companion plant for its relative, the daylily, along with hostas and coneflowers.
The dense, purple blooms on each stalk also make Royal Purple Liriope an excellent specimen plant choice. The plants spread by flower seed and through division.
With its likelihood of thriving in a number of soils and conditions, Royal Purple Liriope is an easy-care perennial. The lily turf grows best if planted so that the crown of the plant remains above the ground. Its clump form makes it easy to control along steps or walkway edges. If a plant becomes too large, or a grouping too dense, gardeners can simply dig up a clump, rinse the roots with water, and separate the individual plants to transplant them right away.