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Vick, Albert F. W.
Pachysandra procumbens Michx.
Allegheny spurge, Mountain spurge
USDA Symbol: papr7
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Mountain spurge or Allegheny spurge is a low perennial, spreading with long rhizomes. Toothed leaves crowd near the top of somewhat fleshy, 6 in., erect stems. Fragrant, white flowers cluster in a spike, the many staminate flowers above, the few pistillate flowers below. Leaves and stems are evergreen. Once the new shoots mature, the previous seasonís growth disappears. Leaves have scalloped margins and are marbled with silver and purple.
Mountain Spurge is an excellent ground cover for shady areas. It is considered more attractive than the over-used, Asiatic Pachysandra terminalis. The native species grows slowly and will not take over like P. terminalis.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Leaf Retention: Semi-evergreen Size Notes:
4 to 9 inches high Leaf:
Dark green with pale green mottling Flower:
Flowers in 2 to 4 inch flower spikes
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White , Pink
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May
Bloom Notes: Color white or pale pink, fragrant, often appearing before new leaves emerge in early spring.
AL , FL , GA , IN , KY , LA , MS , NC , PA , SC , TN Native Distribution:
E. KY to w. NC, s. to LA & FL, Zones 6 to 8. Native Habitat:
Rich woods with limestone substrate. Rare. USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use:
Medium Light Requirement:
Part Shade , Shade Soil Moisture:
Moist Soil pH:
Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2) Soil Description:
Moist, humus-rich, acid soil. In the wild, found in rich soils with limestone substrate. Conditions Comments:
Can be evergreen
if placed where it is protected from north winds.
BenefitUse Ornamental: A lovely, well adapted, low groundcover for the Southeast woodland landscape or shade garden.
Warning: Can be toxic and sometimes fatal to animals if eaten. Humans should generally avoid ingesting plants that are toxic to animals.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Fragrant Flowers: yes
Interesting Foliage: yes
PropagationPropagation Material: Root Division , Softwood Cuttings
Description: Propagate by division of established clumps in Aug. or Sept. Softwood cuttings may be taken in spring or early summer.
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: Protect from north wind to insure leaf retention through winter.
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Delaware Nature Society
- Hockessin, DELongwood Gardens
- Newark, DE
Recommended Species Lists
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Record Modified: 2009-02-10
Research By: TWC Staff