Need an adaptable ground cover that will grow and spread in a wide range of conditions?One of the most popular native plants for shady areas is native Green and Gold, also known as Goldenstar, and Chrysogonum virginianum.
Green and Gold is happiest in loamy soil where it receives morning sun and afternoon shade, but it will adapt to a sunny location if provided adequate water. It'll grow in dense shade but will not flower as well without a little sun.
This plant is semi-evergreen, meaning it may lose most of its leaves depending on how cold the winter weather is. The yellow, one inch wide, flowers appear atop the green foliage beginning in late April or early May. Sporadic flowering can occur all summer, depending on the location and the plant selection. It spreads by stolons, like strawberry plants. The roots are shallow which makes it easy to start new plantings and share starts with friends.
As with most woodland plants, Green and Gold does not need a lot of fertilizer and is not too particular about the soil pH. A pH of 5.5 to 6.5 is probably best. It seldom needs irrigating unless it is growing in a sunny area or becomes obviously drought stressed.
Selections of Green and Gold can be found at many garden centers. For more information, call Buncombe County Cooperative Extension at 255-5522.