Guide to Growing Purple Rock Cress

Aubrieta plants are hardy perennial alpine plants. They are therefore great rockery or edging plants.

They carry purple or blue flowers in the spring.

Common names for Aubrieta include Purple rock cress, and false rock cress. Plants of the Aubrieta genus are native to Europe.

Aubrieta by Color Line.

Blue Rock Cress
Blue Rock Cress photograph by Dendroica.

Quick Aubrieta Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Purple Rock Cress, False Rock Cress, Common Aubrieta, Wallcress.
Latin Names: Aubrieta deltoidea
Life Cycle: Hardy Perennial.
Height: 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30 cm).
Native: Southern Europe, Western and Central Asia.
Growing Region: Zones 4 to 9.
Flowers: Early Spring.
Flower Details: Purple, blue, pink, white.
Foliage: Evergreen. Hairy velvet like.
Sow Outdoors: Surface. Early Spring before last frost, or in autumn. Spacing 10 to 12 inches (25 to 30 cm).
Sow Indoors: Sow in vermiculite. Water from below. Germination time: two to three weeks in the light. Temperature 65 to 70°F (18 to 21°C), 7 or 8 weeks before expected last frost. Transplant outdoors following the last frost.
Requirements: Full Sunlight or light shade in hot areas. Good drainage. Soil pH of 6.0 to 7.5. Average soil. Supply compost mulch in spring. Apply a feed once flowering has finished. Deadhead. In hot areas cut back once flowering has completed. Propagate by taking summer cuttings.

How to Grow Aubrieta

When planting Aubrieta outdoors it is best to sow out the seeds on the surface in the early spring or late in the autumn. If preparing for growing indoors first, then they should be prepared about 7 weeks before they are due to be put out after the last frost of spring. They should be germinated for around two to three weeks in light at a temperature of 18 to 20 degrees Celsius.

Young seedlings of Purple rock cress and other Aubrieta species can be easily damaged by water so it is therefore essential that they are only watered from below.

The seedlings of Aubrieta should be planted out in spring in a sunny rockery with a spacing of about 30cm; soil should be well drained and have a pH of around 6 to 7.5.

Caring for Aubrieta

Aubrieta are easy to look after; they should be dead headed after flowering to prevent seed setting and the plant from taking over the garden.

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