Plant of the Week: Vinca

The word 'rampant' can be a bit of a worry when it's applied to a garden plant.

So if you have a bit of shady (or sunny) land where you think a ground-coverer is needed, but you don't want to have to spend time ripping up a 'rampant' species, choose carefully when you opt for Vinca (periwinkle).

Pick V major and you will probably regret it, although in the right place it is a very useful and reliable plant, suppressing weeds and providing round-the-year foliage and occasional, but not particularly outstanding flowers.

But V minor is a different matter altogether. And the variegated version, with green leaves edged with white and lovely little blue flowers (sometimes purple, sometimes white, depending on the variety) will grace any garden.

It grows relatively slowly, is easy to handle and propagate and can even be used to clothe the outside of hanging-baskets.

It will thrive in just about any soil and situation.

YP MAG 15/1/11