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Perennial Phlox Growing Guide

Header Perennial Phlox - Garden Express Australia

What is Perennial Phlox?

Perennial Phlox (Phlox paniculata) also known as Border Phlox, Garden Phlox, Summer Phlox is a herbaceous perennial. It is part of the Polemoniaceae family and is native to North America. Perennial Phlox has upright clumps of stiffly branching stems that is covered in narrow, lance-shaped, mid-green leaves. During Summer into early Autumn the flowers form in panicles of up to 60 simple open faced flowers on each stem. The flower colour ranges from white, lavender, pink, rose, red and bi colour which have a sweetly fragrance. When planting, choose a spot that is in full sun and is sheltered from the hot afternoon sun with moderately fertile to humus rich, moist, well drained soil. Water to establish and keep moist during the growing and flowering period. Once established they are fairly tolerant of dry and frost conditions. They do need to be protected from strong winds. Perennial Phlox begin to die back in Autumn as they go into their Winter dormancy.

Benefits of Growing Perennial Phlox

Perennial Phlox are brilliant in borders and beds, rockeries, containers or as a backdrop to a low border. They look their best when planted en masse with a mix of different colours. Perfect for informal and cottage style gardens. They are low maintenance, and are usually pest and trouble free. Perennial Phlox is great for attracting butterflies into your garden or cutting the flowers and using them indoors as a cut flower in a vase.

How to Grow Perennial Phlox

Climatic Zones

Cool to Temperate.

Plant Size

Height: 60cm-1.2m, Width: 50-80cm

When To Plant Perennial Phlox

Plant in late Winter to Spring.

Soil Preparation

Phlox prefer a well drained soil that is fertile and has had organic matter mixed through it..

How To Plant Perennial Phlox

Plant in full sun to semi shade, 30-50cm apart with the plant crown at soil level. 

Perennial Phlox Plant Care

Keep moist during the growing season. Water occasionally if rainfall is low.

Add mulch to keep the roots cool during the hotter months

Feed during Winter with a well-balanced fertilizer or well broken down animal manure.

Cut back dead flower stems at season’s end. If you remove the spent flowers it could encourage a second run. Cut back hard to the ground in early Winter as they will begin to go dormant during Autumn.

Plants can be lifted and divided during Winter when they are dormant. If not planted immediately store them temporarily in moist peat moss. To propagate the plant you can use the seeds, cuttings or divisions. But it is easier to grow the plant from cuttings and divisions than growing from seeds.

Watch for snails and slugs when new shoots appear. Black spot can occur on leaves, however does not seem to effect the flowering and can be easily controlled with a fungicidal spray.