Alyssums are low-growing border plants with dainty clusters of flowers, they spread readily, and self-seed. To keep your alyssum plant happy, a question you must answer is “where does alyssum grow best?”
Factors that impact Allysum growth are soil, water, sunlight, temperature, fertilizer, positioning, and companion plants.
If you’re eager to know where to locate your alyssum plants, read on to arrive at the right spot!
Conditions In Which Alyssum Grows Best
To keep the alyssum in excellent health, you have to pay attention to its needs with regards to the soil, lighting, temperature, and nutritional intake, among other requirements. Let us look at each of them in detail below.
1. Well-Draining Relatively Fertile Soil
The alyssum originates from the coastal shores of the Canary Islands and the Mediterranean. This immediately says a lot about the requirements of these plants.
Alyssum plants are quite at home on sand dunes and beaches and can tolerate a wide variety of other soils. Though they can handle many different soil types with poor nutrition but have one strict nemesis when it comes to soil.
In order to thrive, alyssum needs well-draining soil that has medium to minimal organic matter. The plants do not do well in soils that are high in clay as they have no drainage and are constantly wet.
Additionally, soil pH should be neutral to slightly acidic for your alyssum to grow at its best. Alyssum self-seeds, and can take root just about anywhere! In nearby pots, sidewalks, and even in the little cracks in stone walls and pavements.
This sort of invasive behavior may influence where you grow your alyssum plants. You might not want to grow it anywhere that runs the risk of spreading to everywhere other than its designated location!
2. Watering Often Enough
Alyssum is very dependent on water. These plants love the sun and love to flower. But, this comes at a cost since both of these just-stated facts require the plant to absorb a lot of water.
In some cases, you may find alyssum growing best near a tap or another stable source of water. It may especially be common to find young alyssum sprouting out after rains or dampening of the area where they have fallen.
If you have soil that drains too fast or perhaps too slow, alyssum will grow best in pots. People with a garden full of soil with drainage issues will not be best to grow alyssum.
The plants like adequate watering, although they are hardy and are drought tolerant in milder climates.
3. Sunlight for Growth
If you are residing in a very hot region, your plant will appreciate the full morning sun but will need partial shade in the afternoon. So, place it accordingly after carefully watching the patterns of sunlight.
Some areas are too hot and dry, therefore the plants will need protection. It is best to avoid planting your alyssum in such spots if there are better areas in the garden.
Alyssum plants will be fine in full sun in areas that enjoy mild weather.
Tip – Try to plant your Alyssum where it will receive full sun for 6 to 8 hours a day. Also, excessive water may not be mandatory if the temperatures are mild as well!
4. Adequate Temperatures
Gardeners in temperate regions like countries around the Mediterranean can grow the alyssum at any time of the year. Although they grow as annuals, they can self-seed and grow the next year. Some of the new varieties are not as hardy as the original alyssum varieties.
In some areas of the USA, the alyssum has acclimatized itself so well that it has been declared an invasive plant. This goes to show how easily this plant can adapt itself to various climatic conditions with time.
Alyssum is hardy to USDA zones 5 to 9 which relates to -20℉ to 20℉ ℃. But they will probably die in frost conditions.
5. Fertilizer Amounts
Strictly speaking, the alyssum does not need any fertilizer unless the soil is extremely bad or poor.
Container planted alyssum will need a monthly feed of a well-balanced liquid fertilizer. When the plant has finished flowering, you can fertilize it to help recover and to revive it. Be mindful not to give too much fertilizer, as it will result in fewer blooms but fantastic foliage.
We strongly suggest you avoid planting your alyssum in a flower bed which houses plants that need constant fertilizing. Alyssum may start to suffer if given excessive amounts of fertilizer. They are better off on their own rather than over-fertilized!
6. Prime Positioning
Picking out the place where the plant is to be placed is crucial. You should place it where the plant gets morning sun and partial shade in the afternoon. Attention should be taken when placing around big trees where it may have too much shade and not enough sun.
Also, in areas that have too much wind and rain, protection from these elements is essential. Alyssum is not the strongest of plants and does not have extremely thick stems to survive past such severe weather.
7. Alyssum Companion Plants
Alyssum makes for a great companion plant, they attract bees with their scented and colorful flowers. If you have a plant that relies upon bees for pollination, nearby alyssum can help in attracting bees.
Apart from bees, alyssum attracts insects that can help to eradicate pests in the garden. Examples are ladybugs and hoverfly larvae which will feed on aphids in the garden.
Severe weather will not suit an alyssum plant.
For alyssum to be comfortable in rainy weather, it needs a lot of Sun which is just not possible.
Additionally, extended periods of drought are not good for alyssum unless you are growing them in pots and providing a lot of water to them.
9. Container Grown Alyssum
Where will alyssum grow best, a pot or the ground? It’s not crazy to think your alyssum will grow better in a pot than in the ground.
If you have a garden full of poor soil, alyssum won’t grow. Instead, a pot with excellent soil that will support the alyssum will be best. Also, if you live in an apartment you won’t have much of a choice but to grow alyssum in pots.
But, if your house has no space suitable for your alyssum plant, you will be better off growing it outside in the ground. Finally, if you have conditions that emulate the ones present in the Mediterranean, you should definitely choose outdoor ground growth instead of pots.
NOTE- Container-grown Alyssums feel the heat more when summer temperatures really get hot. Move them to the shade in the afternoon, and water them in the early morning or evening.
10. Deadhead Alyssum to Improve Growth
If you remove the dying flowers, the plant will have more encouragement to flower more. It also keeps the plants from looking scraggly. If the plant sometimes looks leggy, you may cut back the stems to bring on new growth, and make it look bushier.
But, the biggest advantage of deadheading alyssum plants is that it keeps them growing. If flower heads are left on, the plant would just drop seeds and then just die off! But with deadheading, this can be avoided.
Where Do I Plant My Alyssum?
Alyssum is not a fussy plant as it can be grown anywhere! It makes a good companion plant and is low maintenance. There are a wide variety of locations it can be planted. Examples are:
- Rock gardens
- Raised beds
- Hanging baskets
- Between stepping stones
Where does alyssum grow best? This answer to this question will vary for every gardener. That’s because conditions in every garden will vary as does climate and thus weather elements as well.
Factors that affect Allysum growth are Soil, water, sunlight, temperature, fertilizer, positioning, and companion plants.
If conditions are optimal, alyssum can take as little as six weeks to eight weeks to flower when grown from seeds. But when conditions are far from ideal, these plants are known to take longer, mostly around eight to ten weeks or even a bit more.
Yes, some states in the USA are fairly appropriate for growing alyssum plants. Any zone fitting into USDA zone 5 to 9 is okay for growing alyssum plants. This is usually the outskirts of the Southern parts of the USA.