Rock Cress, Aubretia

Aubrieta deltoidea

Family: Brassicaceae (brass-ih-KAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Aubrieta (aw-bree-EH-tuh) (Info)
Species: deltoidea (del-TOY-dee-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Alyssum deltoideum


Alpines and Rock Gardens


Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:


Dark Blue


Bloom Time:

Mid Spring



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From softwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

By simple layering

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Merced, California

Fruita, Colorado

Loganville, Georgia

Logansport, Indiana

Westbrook, Maine

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Grand Forks, North Dakota

Bend, Oregon

Gold Hill, Oregon

Hereford, Texas

Freeland, Washington

Poulsbo, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 27, 2013, mehitabel45 from Whidbey Island, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is a very common ground cover on the many walls of the northeast and the northwest. Most people just plant it and forget about it. They shouldn't.

I really like the gorgeous blanket of purple flowers in late April and most of May, but in the summer, after it's done blooming, the foliage just dries up and leaves a mess.
If I cut it back, it comes back in the fall for a while. It creeps along, and makes a nice mat, but the trimming gets old.


On Oct 5, 2002, Weezingreens from Seward, AK (Zone 3b) wrote:

Aubrieta x cultorum, or A. deltoidea is a wonderful rock garden plant. Much like arabis, it forms lovely green mounds, producing bright flowers in mid-spring. Though less hardy than arabis in our Zone 3, it offers several intense color options.


On Aug 30, 2001, eyesoftexas from Toadsuck, TX (Zone 7a) wrote:

This is one of the best known rock garden plants, well suited for covering large areas, and for trailing over walls.
It is also useful as an edging to paths and for combining with other Herbaceous plants.

Cultivation: Well drained garden soil and a sunny position suit it best. Kee plants neat by trimming them after flowering.

Proagation: Lift and divide in early Autumn.


On May 11, 2001, jody from MD &, VA (Zone 7b) wrote:

Easy to grow in cool-temeperate climates. They are short lived and cuttings should be taken every 3-4 years. They are readily propagated also by division of the rhizomatous rootstock. Mat forming greenish gray leaves and masses of starry muave pink flowers in spring.