Grace Ward is an amazing plant for your rock gardens! I’m excited to show you how our ‘grace ward’ lithodora has come along these past couple years. In spring and summer (somewhat), it has a beautiful show of little purplish blue star flowers. Learn more about ‘grace ward’ and how to keep it happy!
By the way, it’s technical name is Lithodora diffusa ‘Grace Ward’. But I’m just calling it grace ward because I’m not going to be typing that out twenty times in this post.
And grace ward is a perennial! So plant it and take care of it and it will reward you with it’s beauty for years to come. And they are evergreen. So after the flowers, you will always some green to adorn your landscapes.
This is definitely one of those plants where you will get a lot of bang for your buck. It will spread and spread and spread.
Our craftsman house sits up on a cute little hill. I get that it’s not the most ideal thing in the world to have a sloped front yard but it is what it is. I’ve grown to really love having our house up on a hill. We have a view of the lake this way and you get the most amazing breezes when you are sitting out on our front porch.
Along with having a hill house and a sloped front yard – we also have a rock garden?? I guess that’s what you would call it? The front yard is supported by a bunch of giant rocks. It’s a giant rock retaining wall. This is pretty common around our area here in the PNW – as it’s very very hilly here.
I actually like “rocky” landscapes. And how certain plants will beautifully cascade and drape over these rocks. It looks so whimsical. And natural. And oh so pretty.
When we first moved in – the sellers must have just landscaped the front yard. We had teeny tiny little mounds of this ‘grace ward’. Only it wasn’t flowering so I had no idea at the time what it was.
Flash forward two years later and…..
It’s grace ward heaven. You guys will be totally amazed at how it spreads!
By the way, check out some of my favorite landscaping books for ideas and inspiration:
How to Care for Grace Ward
For the most part, grace ward has been pretty hands off for me. I haven’t done anything aside from picking a weed or two out of it. Or occasionally watering it on a hot day in the summer. It’s really taken off, and so much so that I’ve planted it in other places around our yard.
My personal experience – they flower the most in Spring and then less in the summer months. But they do still flower.
Of course, now with the renovation coming up – I’m worried these little guys will get stepped on. Or have a piece of siding thrown on top of them. Or whatever. I might have to stop by the job site a few times to make sure it’s still doing ok.
Here is how you can keep grace ward happy!
- Plant in well drained soil.
- Grace Ward likes sun or partial shade. They need some sun to flower but I’ve also read that they hate super HOT weather.
- You can prune them after they are done flowering in the summer. I will have to prune them this summer as some areas are spreading and becoming a bit leggy. But I haven’t really had to touch them for the last two years. Pruning them will help control the spread. I like to see some separation between them.
- Plant them 3 to 4 feet apart. Again – helps with spreading them apart.
- Water them deeply after they are first planted and during times of extreme heat.
- I’ve never fertilized mine. If the leaves start getting yellowish, then you might want to fertilize.
- Cover them with a loose layer of mulch. The mulch helps hold moisture in the ground. And it just looks better. 🙂
I highly, highly recommend you get some grace ward lithodora in your yards! You won’t be sorry!
These form a mat type cover, so it’s great to plant in the front where taller plants can really shine behind them against their blue color. And of course, it’s great for sloped areas of your yard or rocky areas that you need to fill in with something.
Please ignore those pesky weeds there. Ugh.
I was lucky enough to inherit our front yard grace ward when we moved in to this house.
However, the others I bought from our local plant nursery. Which is one of my favorite places in the whole world. It’s beautiful. It’s like going to Longwood Gardens, only it’s much smaller and you don’t have to pay for anything. Unless you want a coffee. Or a plant. Which I usually do.
It’s hard to walk out of there without a coffee and a plant. Or two. Or three. Every time I tell the hubs I went there his first reaction is : “Oh no.”
But I have seen them for sale online too through Burpee Gardening.
By the way, does anyone else get the Burpee catalog?
It’s like Christmas morning for me when it arrives. Is it just me that gets excited about that? They have so many great ideas for vegetables and flowers and plants in there. It’s so much eye candy for the gardener.
If you don’t already get too many catalogs and you like gardening, you might want to consider getting theirs. Plus, their website is a good resource as well.
I’m pretty sure you can find grace ward at your local plant nurseries though. Maybe even home depot??
I hope this inspired you to get planting! Check out my Pinterest gardening board for more great landscape ideas.
Thanks for reading!