Ajuga – Helping It Spread

Q: My backyard is in deep shade so I cannot grow grass. However, ajuga seems to love it: nice flowers, low growth habit, no maintenance. How do I encourage ajuga to spread?

A: Depending on the variety you have, ajuga can be a fast spreader. Plants with the scientific name Ajuga reptans will be the fastest. Go to a nursery and ask the staff which of their varieties gets tangled up with its neighbors most rapidly. That’s the selection you want. Small containers usually have more than one plant, so you can separate them easily. I’d install them on sixteen inch centers (closer if you can afford it) and fertilize with Osmocote at planting and each spring thereafter.