Monkey Grass (Liriope muscari) in the Liriopes Database

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Monkey Grass
Give a thumbs up Lily Turf
Give a thumbs up Lilyturf

Botanical names:
Liriope muscari Accepted
Liriope gigantea Synonym
Liriope platyphylla Synonym
Liriope exiliflora Synonym

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Grass/Grass-like
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Slightly alkaline (7.4 – 7.8)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 6a -23.3 °C (-10 °F) to -20.6 °C (-5 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 10b
Plant Height: 18 inches
Plant Spread: 18 inches
Leaves: Evergreen
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Lavender
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Summer
Late summer or early fall
Underground structures: Rhizome
Uses: Erosion control
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Humidity tolerant
Drought tolerant
Propagation: Other methods: Division
Containers: Suitable in 1 gallon
Suitable in 3 gallon or larger
Needs excellent drainage in pots

A newly released male #Monarch (number 15 as of 4/28/2020) drying

Garden Makeovers:  Moon GardenGarden Makeovers: Moon Garden
By Sharon on October 4, 2012

Did you ever think about giving your gardens a total makeover? My newest garden is probably ten years old and over the years it has had additions randomly tucked in here and there. I've been thinking about a change and I think I'll start with white. How about a Moon Garden where an old patchwork garden used to be?

(Full article41 comments)
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Posted by Marylyn (Houston, TX - Zone 9a) on Jun 24, 2013 11:22 PM

I was given some liriope by a friend. It's a compact kind, with white flowers instead of lavender, but I don't know the name, so I am posting this comment under the general entry.

I planted one row of it around a tree in a shady bed, and it looked wonderful. Eight or so years later, it now fills the middle of the bed, wherever I don't have something else planted. It makes great "living mulch"! It keeps out most weeds, and doesn't seem to bother the new bushes at all. (We took out the original tree a few years ago.)

Its roots are very shallow, and it isn't too much of a chore to rip it out where it isn't wanted. It transplants to a new site very easily. It survived the nasty drought in 2011 (when most of the smaller monkey grass that was planted nearby died), and several cold winters haven't bothered it a bit.

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Posted by JuniperAnn (Coastal TX (Sunset 28/31) - Zone 9a) on Apr 26, 2019 3:56 PM

If you live in the southeastern USA, you already know this plant. It's a well-behaved, if not terribly exciting, workhorse plant. Tolerates drought and some flooding. No care at all. A classic for edges of flower beds since it forms very slowly spreading clumps that are easy to keep in check. Grow in part shade (in which case it will grow some nice but not attention-grabbing spikes of purple flowers in spring) or full shade (no flowers). Tolerates clay soil, alkaline soil, & dry shade.

When buying do NOT just go by the dark green or variegated grassy appearance. Check the label! Look-alikes liriope spicata and members of the ophiopogon genus are aggressive, and should only be grown in pots or in isolated beds surrounded by concrete (or, better yet, not at all. A bed of just "monkey grass" isn't particularly attractive and if you don't constantly fight it, that's what you'll get).

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Posted by plantladylin (Sebastian, Florida - Zone 10a) on Sep 19, 2011 4:20 PM

I see this plant often used as borders and edging in landscapes here in Florida. I keep it in a container because I've heard it can spread and get out of control.

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Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Apr 28, 2019 7:30 AM

Liriope muscari is the Big Blue Liriope that gets around 18 inches high and forms clumps that do not really spread much, if at all. The clump can be left undisturbed indefinitely. In southeast Pennsylvania I have only seen this species grown and planted as a white variegated cultivar that is commonly planted around by everyone and sold a lot at the big box stores, besides conventional nurseries. The other species of Liriope spicata (the Creeping Lilyturf) is shorter and almost always is dark green, except for a uncommon spotted cultivar, and slowly spreads like crazy and can invade everything unless grown by itself.

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Plant Events from our members
Catmint20906 On July 31, 2015 Bloomed
Catmint20906 On October 25, 2014 Fruit Ripened
Catmint20906 On August 23, 2014 Bloomed
piksihk On July 1, 2015 Obtained plant
» Post your own event for this plant

Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
What is this and do I cut it down by Fivehead333 Nov 7, 2020 10:38 PM 11
Plant Sitting by Juliacarol15 Oct 13, 2020 5:40 AM 6
Steep yard groundcover? by Voxram Sep 10, 2020 7:32 AM 8
amending bad soil by Lamaddalena Aug 24, 2020 2:37 PM 3
What weeds are these? by NewGardener95 Jun 25, 2020 7:04 PM 3
Time to post variegated, gold, purple, spotted all colors of the rainbow foliage by bumplbea Oct 25, 2020 7:59 AM 249
Planting Liriope with freezing temps coming by bigdancehawk Apr 9, 2020 11:03 AM 4
Transplanting agapanthus in Los angeles by Agapanthus Dec 16, 2019 1:58 PM 2
Filling a gap by zen089 Nov 13, 2019 6:49 AM 8
How would I make a small berm by ShadyGreenThumb Oct 2, 2019 12:08 PM 5

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