Liriope Species, Lily Turf, Lilyturf, Monkey Grass

Liriope muscari

Family: Asparagaceae
Genus: Liriope (lir-RYE-oh-pee) (Info)
Species: muscari (mus-KAR-ee) (Info)
Synonym:Liriope exiliflora
Synonym:Liriope gigantea
Synonym:Liriope platyphylla
Synonym:Liriope yingdeensis
Synonym:Ophiopogon muscari



Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Grown for foliage



Foliage Color:



6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)


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)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

This Plant is Least Concern (LC)

Soil pH requirements:

4.5 or below (very acidic)

4.6 to 5.0 (highly acidic)

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

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

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Birmingham, Alabama

Huntsville, Alabama

Seale, Alabama

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Golden Valley, Arizona

Kingman, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona

Tempe, Arizona

Berlin, Berlin

Clovis, California

Elk Grove, California

Knights Landing, California

Oakland, California

San Francisco, California

San Jose, California

Auburndale, Florida

Bartow, Florida

Big Pine Key, Florida

Brandon, Florida

Daytona Beach, Florida

Gibsonton, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Homosassa, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida

Keystone Heights, Florida

Lakeland, Florida

Lutz, Florida

Plant City, Florida

Port Orange, Florida

Sarasota, Florida

Sebring, Florida

Umatilla, Florida

Winter Springs, Florida

Albany, Georgia

Alpharetta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia

Braselton, Georgia

Clarkston, Georgia

Dacula, Georgia

Lawrenceville, Georgia

Winterville, Georgia

Newburgh, Indiana

Derby, Kansas

Rose Hill, Kansas

Shawnee Mission, Kansas

Benton, Kentucky

Ewing, Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky

Bastrop, Louisiana

Kenner, Louisiana

New Iberia, Louisiana

Scott, Louisiana

Brookeville, Maryland

Ijamsville, Maryland

Manchester, Maryland

Foxboro, Massachusetts

Norton, Massachusetts

Constantine, Michigan

Rochester, Michigan

Ocean Springs, Mississippi

Saucier, Mississippi

Bridgeton, Missouri

Piedmont, Missouri

Trenton, New Jersey

Fayetteville, North Carolina

Matthews, North Carolina

Raeford, North Carolina

Cleveland, Ohio

Dayton, Ohio

Xenia, Ohio

Choctaw, Oklahoma

Hulbert, Oklahoma

Salina, Oklahoma

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Schwenksville, Pennsylvania

Charleston, South Carolina

Ladys Island, South Carolina

Clarksville, Tennessee

Murfreesboro, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee

Oak Ridge, Tennessee

Alice, Texas

Alvin, Texas

Arlington, Texas

Atlanta, Texas

Bastrop, Texas

Brazoria, Texas

Bryan, Texas

Corpus Christi, Texas

Corsicana, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas

Georgetown, Texas

Irving, Texas

Lubbock, Texas

Missouri City, Texas

Nome, Texas

Odessa, Texas

San Antonio, Texas

San Benito, Texas

Spring, Texas

Sugar Land, Texas

Chesterfield, Virginia

Leesburg, Virginia

Mechanicsville, Virginia

Danese, West Virginia

Newell, West Virginia

Watertown, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Dec 24, 2015, HNemerov from Bastrop, TX wrote:

About as hardy as Aspidistra elatior (Cast Iron Plant) here in Bastrop, Texas (Zone 8b). Reliably heat, drought, and shade tolerant; among a handful of shade-tolerant AND drought-tolerant plants on my list of Bastrop Hardy landscape plants. I didn't water it during our flash drought July through early October 2015, and it maintained green leaves under Pecan shade, and where it received morning direct sun and Elm shade in the afternoon. Not sure I'd try growing it in direct mid-day or afternoon sun in Central Texas, where many plants listed as "full sun" do as well or better under Pecan shade (dappled shade). The late season flowers are a plus to me. Also, easy to divide for propagation. If you need a shade-tolerant landscape border, this is worthy of your consideration.


On Oct 31, 2015, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

Tough and adaptable, this species is cast iron here (Boston Z6a). It's a clump-former, tolerates drought and fairly heavy shade (even dry shade), and can be grown as a groundcover.

Semi-evergreen, the foliage stays fresh till well into January here. The dead foliage should be cut off close in early spring before new growth recommences. This will prevent certain fungal diseases and looks much better. The operation can be performed with a lawnmower.

I don't think the flowers are much to look at.

There are many cultivars which vary considerably in hardiness.

In the southeast, this species is overused to the point of inducing nausea, but here in the north it's not yet used quite so often.

There is a spreading aggressi... read more


On Nov 25, 2014, OneAkela from Chesterfield, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:

These things are found all over central Virginia. Apparently they are a favorite of landscapers. I have five of these and I do nothing to them. Maybe a smidge of fertilizer a couple of times a year (not that it makes much difference; they do what they want). The roots are very tough though. Since mine are only two years old or so, I have not tried multiplying them. Maybe I will tinker with the berries. I noticed them the other day (Nov 2014).

Not a plant of choice, since the builder put them in, but I am not cursing at them either.


On Jul 28, 2014, OlgaT from Nashville, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

My liriope muscari is doing well here in SF East Bay Area. One of my plants has a very tall (3 ft long) grassy stalk growing out of the center. It's definitely part of the plant. Does anybody have a plant that has done this? The plants were installed last year.


On Apr 3, 2014, chrishna from Princeton North, NJ wrote:

I love this plant. So much that I'm going in for round 2 now that we've moved. Round 1 in old house didn't go so well. That makes for a neutral rating :) I live in Zone 6b (then and now); winters to zero, hot humid summers to 100+. I planted at least 50 plants a few years back. Slowly, one by one, here and there (not all in same spot of bed), the leaves yellowed from base to tip, and eventually the whole plant would die. When I would pull out the leaves to clean them up, I noticed they were completely black at the base. After 3 years, I think I had 15 plants left. They were in full sun; the soil was lean, acidic and had decent drainage... They were surrounded by mulch since they were too thin to fill the space at planting. I'm thinking they caught some fungus from the mulch??? ... read more


On Mar 24, 2014, goldenlo from Mount Clemens, MI wrote:

This is a must for Michigan gardeners, especially for those doing battle with hungry deer. They do not touch it. A nice alternative to hostas.
Clean the dead leaves in spring or the plant may take longer to grow. It is generally a NO maintenance, beautiful plant.


On Mar 24, 2014, amelliso from Lubbock, TX (Zone 7b) wrote:

Wonderful plant that does very well in Texas just below the Panhandle. Very hot here in the summer, high 90s and low 100s, and this plant never flinches. It stays pretty green here over the winter, zone 7, just gets brown tips. In early spring, the dead leaves need to be trimmed to make way for the new shoots. Make sure you do this before the new growth begins, or you can get new leaves with the tips lopped off! (Learned that the hard way!) I had this in a flower bed as a border, and over the years it spread into the bed. I just sawed away at the edges with a pruning saw to cut it back to where it belonged. No damage whatsoever to the remaining plants. I think you could probably divide this with a sharp shovel, too. I can't speak to trying to remove it, as I never have. I love th... read more


On Apr 15, 2009, Psyguy10 from Fayetteville, NC (Zone 8a) wrote:

ok, well... the reason i've given a neutral rating is because this plant is one of the toughest, most indestructible plants out there... it's actually a nice plant but it grows so fast it's become somewhat of a weed here (and it hasn't helped that my father had the *great* idea of using it as a border on most of the flower beds) but it's evergreen can withstand sun or shade, almost never needs watering and forms nice mounds... but i've seen it so much i have no desire to buy or plant any more of it for a lonnnng time... but as long as you keep it in check it makes a pretty nice plant **flinches**


On Jan 17, 2009, frausnow from Winterville, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

The Liriope is so very prolific. I had a "bumper" crop this year and collected almost a full gallon ziplock bag full of seeds and those came from about a 12 foot section where they grow along the sidewalk in front of the house! They'll grow in sun or shade. Mine are on the north side of the house where it is mostly shady all day long. They are so full and bushy that I have to thin them out this year, so I will be planting them along my long driveway this year.

Liriope grows about a foot tall with a spikey purple flower during the summer. When the flowers are spent the black berries start forming. It's a slow process. I wait until early winter to harvest them. I put my hand under the bottom berry wrapping my fingers around the stem and gently pull up capturing the berr... read more


On Mar 12, 2008, KaylyRed from Watertown, WI (Zone 5a) wrote:

For such a low-maintenance plant, you really can't go wrong with liriope. I'm a novice gardener and have had great success with it--it really is goof-proof! I use this plant as a combination ground cover and low-growing ornamental grass. The lavender flower spikes are just a bonus.

Mine does quite well with morning sun and afternoon shade.


On Aug 12, 2005, CaptMicha from Brookeville, MD (Zone 7a) wrote:

Fast to flower. Plants are a bit vigourous, growing through my weed paper. Easy to seperate though.

Enjoy full sun, drought tolerant and require little to no care. Makes shiny black berries after flower, which is in the spring and again in late summer.


On Nov 30, 2004, lmelling from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:

I tried planting Liriope here in zone 5b, back in 1998 - even though it was only supposed to be hardy through zone 6. It lived over two very mild winters here with heavy snow cover, but the first really cold winter killed it off.


On Nov 29, 2004, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

A cast -iron, no-kill plant that even someone with the blackest thumb will have success with.

Makes a fine border or edging and is happy regardless if it's in the sun or shade.

Transplants with a minimum of shock and spreads like wildfire.

Care should be taken as to where you put this...because once you've got's always with you.


On Aug 30, 2004, lego_brickster from Lawrenceville, PA (Zone 5b) wrote:

We've had great success with the Big Blue variety here in Zone 5.
We have four big clumps which have overwintered for the last three years for us.
Constant winter snow cover is probably responsible for it's durability here. If uncovered from the snow, it's still lush and green, but once the snow fades and the dry March winds come in, it immediately withers and fades, and looks horrible for about two months. Then it comes out strong again, with it's normal lush appearance. It has bloomed for us every year.
Several landscapers have shown surprise that we grow Liriope in Z5. Most claim that it just can't be done. :-)


On Jul 21, 2004, Coopma from Atlanta, GA wrote:

I love liriope and use it for borders now. I have it in full sun in NE Georgia. It gets really hot and humid and does great. I want to have my entire front and/or backyard be all liriope. Only have to mow it once a year in February. Drought resistant. Has anyone planted a really large area with nothing but liriope?

Also, how well does it grow from seed?
Do you grow it like fescue?


On May 11, 2004, dsturg9469 from Erlanger, KY wrote:

I have had tremendous success with this plant, love the way it looks, grows and matures.


On May 9, 2004, YardKat from Gillett, TX wrote:

I recently purchased 10, 3" pots of liriope from WalMart. All were extremely root bound. I had a large area to cover as a border. My plans were to subdivide & space every 6-8". These plants are very forgiving. I cut, yanked & twisted every one of these pots to subdivide. None suffered from shock -- not even one leaf died! Although they were a big mess in the beginning (I had to do a massive clean up). All are very happy!
YardKat, Gillett, TX


On Oct 2, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:

Southern Living Garden Book lists ten different varieties of Liriope muscari, which is a clumper, plus two varieties of L. spicata, a spreader, and two more varieties of Mondo grass (Ophiopogon), a smaller version of Liriope. I have seen this plant all of my life--in my Grandparent's yards, my Aunts, Uncles, and Cousin's yards--and in my Parent's various yards over the years. And now in my yards through the years here in the Southeastern US.

I have seen statements that this plant is vastly overused as a border plant, but I think it is the perfect border plant. It can be mowed under, or over in the early Spring, and its attractive, evergreen, gently arching, dark green blades definitely announce the line between the lawn or driveway and the flower border. I personally l... read more


On Oct 1, 2003, TerriFlorida from Plant City, FL wrote:

When I started gardening, I started evicting grass, and I did not understand the point of then cultivating grassy things. It took me some years, but I have gotten past my grass hating, grin. After the move of 30 miles, I inherited many clumps of liriope, and I have found it to be tough, forgiving stuff. I have divided 2' wide clumps but it is an adventure involving shovel and much stomping and pulling apart. The type I have blooms low, and the leaves are more than a foot long so these are at least 18" tall. The ones I have divided do very little pouting before settling in. Undivided clumps can sit on the ground and await attention for a week, during the rainy season. It really is an impressive plant. No wonder we see them everywhere here.


On May 30, 2003, kabloom from Alpharetta, GA (Zone 7a) wrote:

Established easily under my dogwood. Even tolerates abuse by my dog and still looks full and lush. Does better in shade, but will tolerate some sun.


On Feb 8, 2003, Greenknee from Chantilly, VA (Zone 6b) wrote:

A very tough competitor. I have a large bed under dense maple trees, has thickened over the years. Mow to ground every Feb. before the interplanted daffodils start to emerge. The solid green, fertile variety is the most vigorous competitor, the variegated ones can't compete as well. I grow from seed and divisions.


On Dec 22, 2002, Chamma from Tennille, GA (Zone 8b) wrote:

I love it...It does well in the shade partial shade...and lots of water! DubaiUAE zone 11


On Aug 1, 2002, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Different cultivars have different hardiness zones, some are hardy to zone 4, others to zone 7. Some are variegated, some do not flower.


On Aug 31, 2001, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

Low-maintenance, rugged plant often found as edging along beds and borders. In early spring, dead leaves should be pruned back and the plant sidedressed with fertilizer.