Common name: bugle
These ground-hugging hardy perennials form carpets of leaves around trees and shrubs. Their blue-toned flowers combine well with spring bulbs and other early perennials. There is a wide range of cultivars to choose from, including with green, bronze-purple or marbled foliage.
In spring, plants bear short spires of tiny, blue (sometimes purple or white) flowers. Leaves are tongue-like, crinkled and shiny; they can be plain or patterned and lie close to the ground.
Bugles prefer cool conditions in reliably damp soil that does not dry out in light, dappled shade.
Plants will not grow well in dry, poor soil. Plants can scorch in full sun. (Plants with purple or variegated leaves can turn green in deep shade).
Did you know?
These plants spread by runners so are great for groundcover. Detach new plants from the edges of an expanding clump and use them to replace older ones towards the centre.
The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.