The Q&A Archives: Drought vs Vinca & Ajuga

Question: I live in zone 6 NJ, where we have the hottest & driest summer on record. Last year I planted ajuga & myrtle. Can they survive without watering, or should I start hauling out the bath water?

Answer: The answer to your question depends on the type of soil you have and the amount of precipitation your area has received. These plants are generally very drought tolerant and will make do with less water in a shady location than they will in a sunny location. If you see that they are wilting in the morning then it is time to haul out the water. When you water, apply a slow deep soaking rather than frequent light sprinkling. (Dig down to see how effective your watering is.) The deep soaking will encourage the roots to stay deep where the soil moisture lasts longer. Also, mulch the soil surface anywhere the groundcover has not filled in. This will help the soil stay moister and cooler.

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