Family: Convallariaceae
Common Name: Lily Turf

Native to Japan and China, these small, ever-green, herbaceous perennials form clumps of grass-like foliage and bear small flowers, rang­ing from purple to white. They make stylish garden borders and are also suitable for rock­eries or as groundcover in shady places.


L. exiliflora, zone 7, to 45 cm (18 in), has dark green foliage and violet flowers.

L. muscari, zone 6, 30-45 cm (12-18 in) high, has dense tufts of dark green leaves and deep purple flowers. Cultivar 'Variegata' has yellow-striped leaves.

L. spicata, zone 4, with a creep­ing habit, grows only to 25 cm (10 in). The flowers are lilac or white.


Lily turf will grow in sun but prefers semi-shade and well-drained, moderately fertile soil. Propagate by division of the plants in late winter or early spring.


There are species suited to various cli­matic zones, but all are quite hardy.

Liriodendron      Lithodora