July 7, 2020

Periwinkle Hue

Vinca or periwinkle

Janine Pineo Photo | Vinca or periwinkle

The genus Vinca has six species in the dogbane family, with V. minor and major preferring shady locations where the vining plants readily form a groundcover. The flowers are generally a shade of blue, blossoming in the spring with sporadic flowering over the summer and into the autumn. V. minor, or lesser periwinkle, is hardy to Zone 4, and isn’t overly fussy about conditions, doing well in dry, average soil. The glossy, evergreen leaves make this plant attractive throughout the year. It can be invasive in that it might escape beds and creep into lawns. A single plant can spread a foot or so, while the height rarely strays above 6 inches. The name Vinca is derived from the Latin “vincire,” which means to bind or fetter.