Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Creeping Phlox
Phlox stolonifera 'Sherwood Purple'

Family: Polemoniaceae (po-le-moh-nee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Phlox (floks) (Info)
Species: stolonifera (sto-lo-NIF-er-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Sherwood Purple

7 vendors have this plant for sale.

6 members have or want this plant for trade.


under 6 in. (15 cm)

6-9 in. (15-22 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)

Sun Exposure:
Light Shade
Partial to Full Shade


Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring

Grown for foliage

Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)
From herbaceous stem cuttings
By simple layering
By serpentine layering
By stooling or mound layering

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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3 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive coriaceous On Jun 1, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

An easy, adaptable perennial with showy blue-violet flowers on erect 8" stems in spring. Native to the woodlands of the Appalachians from Maine to Georgia. Enjoying sun or shade, it blooms best with a few hours of sun. Needs consistent moisture to look its best---though it's fairly drought- tolerant once established, this is a plant of moist woodlands and not suitable for xeriscaping. According to Armitage, it's hardy to Z2.

Spreads fairly quickly by prostrate stems (stolons) that root at the nodes to form a mat. Basal foliage is only 2-3 inches high and isn't dense enough to smother weeds or interfere with other perennials. It is also easy to remove where unwanted. I know of nowhere where this might be considered aggressive or invasive or a noxious weed.

Many cultivars have been selected. This cultivar is more vigorous than 'Bruce's White'---I tried mixing the two, and 'Sherwood Purple' quickly won the competition.

This species sometimes gets powdery mildew. Consistent moisture helps prevent it. Also you can remove flowering stems after bloom to increase air circulation.

Good with small spring bulbs and ephemerals in partial shade. I prefer it to the widely promoted Phlox divaricata, whose flower color is similar but which turns yellow and agonizingly goes dormant shortly after flowering.

In 1990 this species was designated the Perennial Plant of the Year by the Perennial Plant Association.

Neutral berrygirl On Mar 22, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:

PHLOX Sherwood Purple - Stolonifera - Tufed Creeping Phlox - Short 12" - Plant 10" apart. Soft lilac shade. New and extra fragrant.

Positive vidamc On Mar 31, 2004, vidamc from Fenton, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:

We found this plant growing in the woods on our property and moved some of it to a filtered sun flower bed about 3 years ago. They are thriving and have tripled in size which is ok with me because they look great among the rocks. They have a light purple flower and the foilage is attractive. They bloom beginning around mid-april and continue for about a month.

Positive lupinelover On May 30, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

The flowers of this cultivar are bigger and more substantial than the type. A good purple color is reliably produced.

Seed does not come true to type.


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

Wetumpka, Alabama
Machesney Park, Illinois
Fallston, Maryland
Roslindale, Massachusetts
Spencer, Massachusetts
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Fenton, Missouri
Saint Louis, Missouri
Burlington, North Carolina
Raleigh, North Carolina
Grove City, Ohio
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
North Augusta, South Carolina
Knoxville, Tennessee
Locust Dale, Virginia
Conrath, Wisconsin

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