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Lithodora 'Heavenly Blue'

Lithodora diffusa

Family: Boraginaceae
Genus: Lithodora (lith-oh-DOR-uh) (Info)
Species: diffusa (dy-FEW-sa) (Info)
Cultivar: Heavenly Blue


Alpines and Rock Gardens



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


under 6 in. (15 cm)


12-15 in. (30-38 cm)


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)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Medium Blue

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Blooms repeatedly



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:

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


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


Auburn, Alabama

Centre, Alabama

Brea, California

Camarillo, California

Carlotta, California

Decatur, Georgia

Snellville, Georgia

Chilmark, Massachusetts

Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts

Lexington, Massachusetts

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Lake Toxaway, North Carolina

Vass, North Carolina

Eugene, Oregon

Portland, Oregon

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania

Simpsonville, South Carolina

Maryville, Tennessee

North Richland Hills, Texas

Burke, Virginia

Hanover, Virginia

Richmond, Virginia

Bellevue, Washington (2 reports)

Brady, Washington

Carson, Washington

Cathcart, Washington

Langley, Washington

Moclips, Washington

Port Townsend, Washington

Seattle, Washington

Vancouver, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Sep 21, 2015, BeaGardener from Lexington, MA wrote:

I love this plant, but it is turning dark brown or black in the middle! It is in well drained soil in full sun for the afternoon, part or shade in the morning, and it is mulched with gravel to keep the crowns drier. What am I doing wrong? If it is an acid loving plant, then I put it too near lavender, which I understand likes lime. Please let me know if you know what I should do to save the lithodora for next year!


On Apr 5, 2015, 1077011947 from Greer, SC wrote:

I am growing Lithodora diffusa here in the Upstate of SC in my Xeric garden along with several species of delospermas and other succulents. It blooms continuously all spring and summer. Bees love it. Neighbors love it as well. This is truly a beautiful blue evergreen blooming plant and very hardy..


On Jun 6, 2012, bendipa from London,
United Kingdom wrote:

I had a similar problem. It can be a difficult plant to grow. The soil must be well drained and acidic . Lithodora Diffusa hates lime. If you live in a hard water area, watering will add lime to the soil (raises pH).The pH will become too high so.the plant will suffer..You either need to plant in ericaceous compost to begin with, or add some sulphur to the planting mixture whiich will keep the soil acidic enough. To ensure the soil drainage is sufficient add plenty of sharp sand/grit to the planting area.


On May 19, 2012, altura from Bluffton, SC wrote:

I live in Bluffton, SC and bought 6 of these plants at Home Depot in April. They were gorgeous and I was so proud after getting them in the ground. In about 2 wks, one plant started to turn black and I was so sad. Eventually it died but before it died, a second one followed suit. I read here to cut out the die back which I have on the remaining 4, 3 of which look good but the 4th is half gone. I don't think I have overwatered. Should I give up or replace with new ones? Help!! Mary Ann


On Sep 5, 2008, kkitchener from Moclips, WA (Zone 8a) wrote:

I am are just feet from the Pacific Ocean - Wind and Salt Air! Lithodora is one of my staples. It is reliable and very pretty. Depending on how the wind hits it, it may "burn" or get ugly, I just whack off the ugly part off and it grows back and rewards me with pretty blooms all summer long.


On May 2, 2006, trothatl from Decatur, GA wrote:

In the Atlanta area, the plants are filled with beautiful blue flowers in April. The center of my plants have browned out a bit, but I'm told I can prune the plants back this fall and they will be fine next year. They seem to be hardy and grew quickly this spring.


On Apr 22, 2003, Zanymuse from Scotia, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

Low growing, spreading plant, that has a beautiful blue color that really stands out in spite of the small size of the flowers. Likes free draining soil but tolerates our wet winters and frequent light to medium frosts. Grew fastest here in full sun but did ok in partial shade also.