The Q&A Archives: Ground Cover Or Bushes?

Question: I was given latana's for my new yard and told they were great bushes, growing 3-4ft high and spreading 2-3 feet wide. But some other ones I bought are very low to the ground and was told it was a ground cover and doesn't grow high but will spread some. Which is right? My bushy ones are orange-red and the low ones are purple.

Answer: Lantana is a member of the verbena family. Lantana camara is an upright shrub growing to about 6', flowering in yellow, orange or red flowers. Lantana montevidensis (sometimes sold as Lantana sellowiana) is a well-known ground cover with branches that trail to as much as 3'. These plants have dark green leaves with coarsely toothed edges; sometimes tinged red or purplish. Rosy lilac flowers are the norm, but there's a white version as well. So, both answers are correct - you have both plants!

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