Crazy for Creeping Phlox: The Ultimate Guide to Growing Your Own Carpet of Color

Table of Contents


Top-rated Gardening Power Tools on Amazon

Are you looking to add a splash of color to your garden or landscape? Look no further than the stunning Creeping Phlox! This resilient ground cover boasts bright blooms in shades of pink, blue, and white, and requires minimal maintenance to thrive. With our complete guide to growing Phlox subulata, you’ll be a garden pro in no time.

Benefits of Growing Your Own Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Benefits of Growing Creeping Phlox at Home

  • Low maintenance
  • Fragrant blooms
  • Attracts butterflies and bees
  • Covers bare ground and slopes
  • Drought tolerant
  • Comes in a variety of colors

General Information About Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Plant Family: Phlox family (Polemoniaceae)
Plant Latin Name: Phlox subulata

Plant Variations Available

Creeping Phlox, also known as Phlox subulata, is a hardy, low-growing perennial plant that is native to North America. It is a popular choice among gardeners for its stunning spreading clusters of small, colorful flowers and its ability to thrive in a variety of climates and soil conditions.


Farmer Jer's Trading Post Ad

One of the most notable variations of Creeping Phlox is its vast range of hues, which can vary from white and pink to blue, purple, and even red. This diversity of colors makes it an ideal choice for adding pops of color to rock gardens, borders, or even ground cover in larger garden spaces.

In addition to its colorful blooms, Creeping Phlox also exhibits a range of textures, from smooth, shiny foliage to rough, crinkly leaves. Some varieties of Creeping Phlox may also produce small, spiky flowers, adding even more visual interest to the plant.

When it comes to maintenance, Creeping Phlox is a relatively low-maintenance plant that requires minimal watering and fertilization. It is also resistant to many common garden pests and diseases, making it a great choice for gardeners who want to keep their gardens looking healthy and vibrant without spending hours on upkeep.

Overall, Creeping Phlox is a versatile plant that adds bursts of color and texture to any garden space. Whether you’re looking for a colorful ground cover or a beautiful border plant, Creeping Phlox is sure to impress with its varied hues, textures, and hardiness.

Germinating Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Preferred Zones

When it comes to outdoor growing, Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) is a beautiful and hardy choice. This low-growing perennial is known for its eye-catching flowers that bloom in shades of pink, purple, and white, as well as its ability to spread quickly and effectively.


Top-rated Gardening Carts on Amazon

So, if you’re interested in growing Creeping Phlox in your own backyard, here’s what you need to know about the best zones for optimal growth:

Firstly, Creeping Phlox thrives in zones 3-9, which encompass most of the United States, with the exception of the extreme southern and northern regions. These zones provide the right conditions for the plant to grow and flourish, including moderate temperatures and the right amount of rainfall.

Secondly, it’s worth noting that Creeping Phlox prefers well-draining soil and full sun exposure, although it can tolerate some shade. It’s also important to ensure that the soil is moist, but not waterlogged, as this can cause root rot.

Finally, in terms of care and maintenance, Creeping Phlox is relatively low-maintenance once established. It can be pruned back in the fall to encourage new growth, and requires minimal watering and fertilization.

In summary, if you live in zones 3-9 and are looking for a beautiful, hardy, and low-maintenance plant for your outdoor space, Creeping Phlox is definitely worth considering. With a little care and attention, this charming perennial can add color and texture to your garden year after year.

Sowing Instructions

Sowing Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) can be a rewarding experience that enhances any garden or landscape. This particular plant is a low-growing perennial that produces a profusion of star-shaped flowers in various shades of pink, white, and purple. Follow these steps for successful sowing:

1. Choose the right location – Creeping Phlox prefers well-drained soil and full sun. Make sure the planting area receives at least six hours of direct sunlight daily.

2. Prepare the soil – Clear the planting area of any weeds or debris. Break up the soil to a depth of 6 inches and add compost or organic matter to improve soil texture and fertility.

3. Sow the seeds – Creeping Phlox seeds are small and should be sown thinly and evenly over the prepared soil. You can mix the seeds with sand or fine vermiculite to make them easier to handle. Gently press the seeds into the soil, but do not cover them as they need light to germinate.

4. Water and maintain – Keep the soil evenly moist until the seeds germinate, which can take up to 21 days. Once the seedlings sprout, thin them to 6-12 inches apart. Water the plants regularly, but avoid overwatering as Creeping Phlox does not tolerate wet soil.

5. Enjoy your Creeping Phlox – With proper care, Creeping Phlox will form a dense carpet of colorful flowers that will spread and thrive in your garden. Deadhead the spent flowers to promote continuous blooming and prepare for a stunning floral display all season long.

Overall, sowing Creeping Phlox can be an enjoyable and fruitful experience for gardeners of all levels. With these basic steps, you can create a beautiful and vibrant landscape that everyone will enjoy.

Preparation Advice

If you’re looking to add a low-maintenance, versatile groundcover to your garden, then Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) might be the perfect choice for you. This charming evergreen plant is a popular choice amongst gardening enthusiasts due to its ability to quickly spread, creating a carpet of vibrant color that lasts for years.

To start preparing for growing Creeping Phlox, you’ll need to ensure that you have the right equipment. Firstly, it’s important to choose a suitable location for your plant which should receive full sun exposure for at least six hours a day. Additionally, the soil should be well-draining and slightly acidic. To check this, use a pH tester to make sure the soil is within the range of 5.0 to 7.0.


Top-rated germination on Amazon

Next, you’ll need to choose the right planting method. You can either grow this plant from seeds or propagate it by

Germination Tools and Equipment

Germinating Creeping Phlox is a fun and rewarding process, but it is important to have the right tools and equipment to ensure your seeds grow into healthy plants. Here are some of the best tools and equipment you will need for germinating Creeping Phlox:

1. Seed Trays: Seed trays are an essential tool for germinating Creeping Phlox seeds. They provide a controlled environment that is perfect for seed starting. Look for seed trays with drainage holes and a clear plastic cover to maintain humidity levels.

2. Seed Starting Mix: A high-quality seed starting mix is crucial for germinating Creeping Phlox seeds. The mix should be sterile, lightweight, and well-draining to avoid overwatering and prevent fungal growth.

3. Seed Heater: A seed heater can be helpful in maintaining the ideal temperature for germinating Creeping Phlox seeds. The ideal temperature for germination is around 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit.

4. Grow Lights: Grow lights are essential for providing adequate lighting for germinating Creeping Phlox seeds. Ideally, you should aim for 14-16 hours of light per day to ensure that your seedlings get enough light to grow strong and healthy.

5. Watering Can: A watering can with a fine spray nozzle is the best tool for watering your seedlings. It allows you to water your plants evenly and avoid disturbing the soil.


Top-rated plant lights on Amazon

6. Plant Labels: It’s important to keep track of which seeds you’ve planted, so plant labels are essential. Use a waterproof marker to label each tray with the name and planting date of each variety.

7. Fertilizer: Once your seedlings begin to grow, you’ll need to fertilize them. Look for a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer and follow the instructions on the package.

By using these tools and equipment, you’ll be well on your way to growing healthy Creeping Phlox plants. Happy germinating!

Growing Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Light Requirements

When it comes to the optimal lighting requirements for growing Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata), there are a few important things to keep in mind.

Firstly, it’s worth noting that Creeping Phlox is a hardy perennial plant that is known for its spectacular display of colorful flowers that bloom in the spring and early summer. In order to ensure your Creeping Phlox grows healthy and produces stunning blooms, you’ll need to provide it with the right amount of sunlight.


Top-rated DIY Greenhouses on Amazon

Generally speaking, Creeping Phlox prefers to grow in full sun to partial shade. This means that it thrives in bright, direct sunlight for at least 6 hours a day, but it can also tolerate some shade from nearby trees or other plants. Ideally, you’ll want to place your Creeping Phlox in an area that receives plenty of direct sunlight in the morning, followed by some shade in the afternoon to protect it from the hot sun.

It’s worth noting that if you live in a particularly hot or dry climate, you may need to provide additional shade or irrigation to help your Creeping Phlox thrive. This is because too much heat or direct sunlight can cause the plant to dry out and become stressed, which can result in stunted growth or poor flower production.

When it comes to soil and watering requirements, Creeping Phlox prefers well-draining soil that is rich in compost or organic matter. This will help ensure that the plant gets the proper nutrients it needs to grow strong and healthy. Additionally, you’ll want to water your Creeping Phlox regularly, especially during hot or dry spells, to keep the soil moist but not waterlogged.

Overall, with the right amount of sunlight, soil, and water, you can easily grow healthy, beautiful Creeping Phlox that will brighten up any garden or landscape. So why not give it a try and see the results for yourself?

Temperature Requirements

If you’re looking to cultivate a lush and healthy bed of Creeping Phlox, one of the essential factors you need to pay attention to is temperature. This beautiful, low-growing groundcover is a hardy plant that thrives in cool to moderate temperatures.

Ideally, Creeping Phlox tends to grow best in temperatures ranging from 45 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit(7°C to 18°C). Anything below or above these limits can slow down or damage its growth. However, this perennial plant can withstand chilly winter temperatures down to -40F (-40C) depending on its cultivar.

During the hot months of summer, Creeping Phlox can struggle to survive in scorching temperatures. Hence it is best to ensure that the plant is located in a partly shaded or full-sun environment. A moist and well-drained soil type will also help regulate the root zone temperature, keeping the soil cool during hot weather.

In colder climates, Creeping Phlox needs some protection during the winter months. Add a layer of mulch over your plants after the first frost to help insulate the roots and prevent winterburn. Also, it is not advisable to plant Creeping Phlox where it will be exposed to strong winds, especially the bitter polar arctic winds, as this may damage the plant’s tender foliage.


Top-rated Planting Soils on Amazon

In summary, Creeping Phlox plants require cool to moderate temperatures to grow healthily. Make sure to monitor the environment, provide shade during the hot summer months, a well-draining soil, and winter protection in cold climates. By following these simple guidelines, you will have a gorgeous, healthy bed of Creeping Phlox that will bloom for many seasons to come.

My Favorite Tools For Growing Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Caring for a beautiful plant like the Creeping Phlox is something that requires proper tools and equipment to ensure its healthy growth and maintenance.

First and foremost, you’ll need a good set of gardening gloves to protect your hands from the prickly stems and thorns that may be present. A pair of sturdy pruning shears will come in handy when it’s time to cut back any dead or damaged branches and stems.

To ensure the soil stays moist and well-draining, a good quality potting soil is essential, along with a watering can or hose with a misting nozzle for gentle, even watering. A hand trowel or shovel will also be useful for planting and transplanting.

For fertilization, a balanced slow-release fertilizer or organic compost will provide the necessary nutrients for healthy growth. Additionally, a pair of small gardening scissors or clippers will allow for precision trimming of the delicate foliage and flowers.

Lastly, a pair of knee pads or a kneeling pad will come in handy when tending to the low-lying, creeping vines of the Phlox subulata. With these tools and equipment, you’ll be well-equipped to care for and maintain a stunning and vibrant Creeping Phlox plant.

Preferred Soil Type

Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) is a stunning perennial plant that produces striking blooms in a wide range of colors including lavender, pink, white, and red. To grow this plant in a healthy and thriving manner, it is important to provide it with the right kind of soil.

Firstly, it is best to plant Creeping Phlox in a soil that is well-draining and rich in nutrients. The soil should be loose and airy, allowing water to flow freely and air to circulate around the roots.


Top-rated Watering Cans on Amazon

The preferred pH range for Creeping Phlox is between 5.5 and 7.0, which makes it slightly acidic to neutral in nature. You can use a soil tester to accurately determine the pH of the soil before planting.

To improve soil fertility and provide the necessary nutrients for Creeping Phlox to grow, you can amend the soil with organic matter such as compost, manure, or leaf mold. Additionally, a slow-release fertilizer can be added to the soil to provide sustained nutrition over time.

In terms of moisture requirements, Creeping Phlox prefers a slightly moist soil. However, it is important to avoid over-watering, as this can lead to root rot and other issues that can negatively impact the plant’s health.

Overall, growing Creeping Phlox in healthy soil is essential to ensure its longevity and ability to thrive. By providing the right soil conditions, you can enjoy the beauty of this stunning plant for years to come.

Watering Requirements

If you’re looking to grow a stunning groundcover that displays a carpet of color across your garden, you might want to consider the Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata). These delightful plants are low-growing, mat-forming perennials that spread effortlessly and display a profusion of pink, purple, white, or blue flowers in the spring.


Top-rated Fertilizers on Amazon

To keep this vigorous herbaceous evergreen happy and healthy, it’s crucial to give it the right amount of water. Unlike drought-tolerant succulents, the Creeping Phlox prefers moist, well-draining soil that doesn’t become soggy or waterlogged. So, make sure you plant it in an area where water can drain away quickly, and the roots don’t sit in stagnant water.

During the growing season, which is typically from spring to early summer, you should water your Creeping Phlox regularly. Aim for about an inch of water per week, either from rainfall or supplemental irrigation. If the weather is hot and dry, you may need to water more frequently to prevent the soil from drying out completely.

It’s essential to water the Creeping Phlox deeply, soaking the soil to a depth of at least six inches. This encourages the roots to grow deep and strong, which helps the plant resist drought stress and other environmental challenges. Avoid shallow watering, which can promote weak, shallow roots and fungal diseases.

One useful tip for watering your Creeping Phlox is to mulch around the plant’s base with organic matter, such as shredded leaves, bark, or compost. This helps retain moisture in the soil, reduces water loss through evaporation, and keeps the soil temperature cool and consistent.

In summary, the Creeping Phlox is a stunning and low-maintenance groundcover that requires regular watering during the growing season. Make sure you plant it in well-draining soil, water deeply and regularly, and mulch around the base for optimal growing conditions. With proper care and attention, your Creeping Phlox will reward you with a spectacular display of colorful flowers year after year.

What You Need To Know About Fertilizing Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

To keep your Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) healthy and vibrant, proper fertilizer application is essential. While these plants are relatively low maintenance, it’s important to understand their specific nutrient needs to ensure you get the most out of your garden.

When it comes to fertilizing Creeping Phlox, less is more. The plant does not require a lot of fertilizer, and using too much can be detrimental to its health. We recommend applying a slow-release, balanced fertilizer to the soil in early spring, just as new growth begins to emerge. This will provide the plant with the necessary nutrients to support its growth throughout the season.

Avoid applying any fertilizer in late fall, as it can interfere with the plant’s ability to harden off and prepare for winter. Additionally, take care when applying fertilizer near blueberries or potatoes, as these crops are susceptible to the same diseases as Creeping Phlox.

In terms of soil pH, Creeping Phlox prefers a slightly acidic soil with a pH between 5.5 and 7.0. If your soil is naturally alkaline, you may need to adjust its acidity by adding sulfur or other amendments.

As with any plant, proper watering and sunlight are also crucial for healthy growth. Water your Creeping Phlox regularly, but avoid over-watering, as this can lead to root rot. Provide ample sunlight for at least 6 hours per day, preferably in the morning and early afternoon.


Top-rated Gardening Kits on Amazon

By following these fertilizing and care tips, you can enjoy a beautiful, healthy bed of Creeping Phlox for years to come.

My Favorite Fertilizers For Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) is a delightful ground-cover plant that is loved for its vibrant colors and great resilience. To achieve healthy growth and an explosion of blossoms, it’s essential to select the right fertilizers.

Phlox subulata benefits from a well-balanced and slow-release fertilizer that delivers nutrients over an extended period. These fertilizers are designed to avoid sudden bursts of growth that can leave the plant exhausted and prone to diseases. Ideally, the fertilizer should have an NPK balance of 10-10-10 or 20-20-20, delivering equal amounts of nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium, to promote optimal growth and blossoming.

Apart from the NPK blend, consider applying supplements like compost or organic matter to improve soil structure and fertility. These supplements also nourish beneficial soil microbes, which aid in nutrient uptake by the plant.

When applying the fertilizer, do so when the plant is actively growing or when it displays yellowing or wilting symptoms. Over-fertilizing creeping phlox can lead to stunted growth or chlorosis, where the leaves turn yellow, indicating a shortage of nutrients.

In summary, healthy creeping phlox requires well-balanced and slow-release fertilizers with an NPK ratio of 10-10-10 or 20-20-20, and organic matter or compost supplements to improve soil fertility. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using fertilizers and monitor the plant’s response to feeding to avoid over-fertilizing or under-fertilizing.

Harvesting Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Time To Maturity

Creeping Phlox, also known as Phlox subulata, is a perennial plant that is native to North America. It is a popular choice for gardeners, due to its beautiful flowers and how reliably it grows. If you’re interested in planting Creeping Phlox in your garden, it’s important to know more about its lifecycle.

Typically, it takes about 2-3 years for Creeping Phlox to reach maturity from the time it sprouts. During its first year, the plant will primarily focus on establishing its root system and foliage. In the second year, the plant will begin to produce its beautiful, colorful blooms.

Once your Creeping Phlox is established, it will require minimal maintenance to ensure it thrives. The plant prefers medium moisture and well-drained soil, and will grow best in full sun to partial shade. In addition, you should plan to divide the plant every 2-3 years to keep it healthy and encourage new growth.

Overall, Creeping Phlox is a beautiful and reliable plant that can add a stunning element to your garden. While it takes a few years for the plant to reach maturity, the wait is well worth it once you see the beautiful blooms it produces. So, if you’re looking to add some color to your garden, consider adding Creeping Phlox to your lineup!

Harvest Instructions

If you’re looking for a vibrant and easy-to-grow ground cover for your garden, Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata) is a fantastic option. Not only does it provide an impressive display of colorful blooms in the spring, but it also spreads quickly and can thrive in a variety of growing conditions.

When it comes to harvesting Creeping Phlox, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, it’s important to wait until the plant has finished blooming before you start collecting any cuttings. This will allow the plant to focus its energy on growth and recovery rather than trying to produce more blooms.

To harvest Creeping Phlox, start by finding a healthy stem that’s at least 4-6 inches long. Using a sharp, clean pair of scissors or pruning shears, snip the stem just below a set of leaves. Be sure to make a clean cut to avoid damaging the plant.

Once you’ve harvested your cuttings, it’s important to keep them in a cool, moist environment until you’re ready to plant them. You can wrap the stems in damp paper towels or place them in a container filled with water to prevent them from drying out.

When you’re ready to plant your cuttings, choose a sunny location with well-draining soil. Dig a small hole and gently place the cutting in the soil, making sure to bury the stem just up to the set of leaves. Water the plant thoroughly and continue to keep the soil moist as the cutting starts to take root.

With a little care and attention, your harvested Creeping Phlox cuttings should take root and start to grow into beautiful plants in no time!

My Favorite Tools For Harvest Time

If you’re planning on harvesting Creeping Phlox, there are a few tools and pieces of equipment that will make the process much smoother.

First and foremost, you’ll need a pair of sturdy pruning shears. The stems of Creeping Phlox can be quite tough, so you’ll want a pair of shears that can handle the job without getting dull too quickly. When cutting, be sure to make clean, angled cuts just above a set of leaves, as this will encourage healthy new growth.

You’ll also want to have a garden trowel on hand for digging up the roots of the plants. Creeping Phlox is a hardy perennial, so its roots are likely to be quite strong and well-developed. A trowel with a sharp blade and a sturdy handle will help you loosen and lift the plants without damaging them.

If you’re planning on harvesting a large amount of Creeping Phlox, a wheelbarrow or garden cart can be a life-saver. This will allow you to transport your plants and tools easily, without having to make multiple trips back and forth.


Top-rated Gardening Grow Tents on Amazon

Finally, it’s always a good idea to wear gloves and a protective mask when harvesting any plant. This will protect your skin and lungs from any potential irritants or allergens that may be present.

With these tools and equipment on hand, you’ll be well-prepared to harvest Creeping Phlox efficiently and safely. Happy harvesting!

End of Season & Overwintering

As with many perennials, Creeping Phlox, or Phlox subulata, requires proper care during the end of the growing season to ensure its survival through the winter months. These colorful plants make great groundcovers, rock garden additions, and accent features in any garden, but they do require some attention come fall.

First and foremost, it’s important to keep an eye on your Creeping Phlox throughout the growing season to monitor its health. Look out for any signs of disease or pests, and address them as soon as possible to prevent potential damage heading into the winter months.

Towards the end of the season, you’ll want to start tapering back watering to allow the plants to acclimate to the cooler temperatures and shorter days. Depending on your climate, you may also want to cut back the foliage once it begins to die back naturally. This will not only help the plant conserve energy, but also make it easier to clean up fallen leaves and debris around the base of the plant.

When it comes to overwintering, it’s important to protect your Creeping Phlox from harsh winter conditions. A layer of mulch around the base of the plant can help insulate the roots, while covering the plant with burlap can also help protect it from wind and cold temperatures. In areas with particularly harsh winters, you may also want to consider adding a layer of snow to further insulate the plant.

Come spring, remove any winter protection and gently rake away the mulch to allow new growth to begin. Avoid fertilizing your Creeping Phlox until new growth appears, and be sure to give it a good watering to encourage healthy growth throughout the season.

Final Thoughts on Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

Congratulations, you’ve learned everything you need to know about germinating, growing, and harvesting Creeping Phlox! With its stunning blooms and hardy nature, this plant is a wonderful addition to any garden. By starting with a properly prepared soil and using the appropriate watering and fertilization techniques, you can achieve success in growing your very own Creeping Phlox garden. From germinating the seeds to harvesting the beautiful flowers, it’s important to take the time to care for your plants with patience, attention, and dedication. Don’t forget to share your love for this gorgeous plant with others and relish in the beauty of your flourishing garden. Happy gardening!

Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata)

1. How do I plant and care for Creeping Phlox?
Plant Creeping Phlox in an area with good drainage and full sun. Make sure to water it regularly and avoid overwatering to prevent root rot. Fertilize once a year in early spring with a balanced fertilizer. Prune after flowering to promote new growth and prevent excessive spreading.

2. Can Creeping Phlox grow in partial shade?
While Creeping Phlox prefers full sun, it can tolerate some shade. However, it may not produce as many flowers or spread as quickly as it would in full sun. Try to provide at least 6 hours of direct sun per day for best results.

3. How do I propagate Creeping Phlox?
Creeping Phlox can be propagated through division or stem cuttings. To divide, simply dig up the plant and separate the root ball into sections. To propagate with stem cuttings, take 3-4 inch cuttings from the tips of the plant and remove the lower leaves. Dip the cut end in rooting hormone and plant in a container with potting soil. Keep moist and in indirect sunlight until roots have formed.

Keep reading more gardening greats:

Keep reading more gardening greats:

Perfect Perennials? Read These:


Top-rated Gardening Stools on Amazon

More Perennials? Yes, Please!

Scroll to Top