Herniaria glabra

Family: Caryophyllaceae (kar-ree-oh-fil-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Herniaria (her-nee-AR-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: glabra (GLAY-bruh) (Info)




Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round


under 6 in. (15 cm)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)


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)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade



Bloom Color:



Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer


Grown for foliage



Good Fall Color

Provides winter interest

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Palmer, Alaska

Fresno, California

Long Beach, California

Denver, Colorado

Winnetka, Illinois

Rowley, Massachusetts

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Flat Rock, North Carolina

Spanish Fork, Utah

Freeland, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Nov 13, 2016, mgpell from jerusalem,
Israel wrote:

Really interested in trying Herniaria glabra for our roof garden but concerned about its "long taproot" causing damage. Does anyone know how deep the taproot can reach and if it is considered as an aggressive plant in that respect? We need to know this so we determine if a root barrier is required to stop the roots reaching the insulation layer.


On Sep 23, 2016, sladeofsky from Louisville, KY (Zone 6b) wrote:

I think the zone 7 rating is a much repeated assumption. There may be certain specific conditions for different zones, (i.e. drainage, amount of summer heat, etc.), but I'm not sure. I do know that it is naturalized in Quebec and Ontario, so it's going to be at least zone 5 hardy. Some claim it is a zone 4.


On Aug 12, 2016, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

Armitage says that this is hardy in Z5-8.

Grows from a single taproot, height is 2", plants can get 2' across. Stems do not root where they touch the ground, unlike the thymes.


On Aug 12, 2016, bobbymom from Spanish Fork, UT wrote:

I've had herniaria glabra in my yard for decades and have received much more benefit from it than the effort which I put into establishing it.


On Sep 10, 2014, Dorchid from Fresno, CA wrote:

Great groundcover! Thanks to the tap root, Herniaria stays within reasonable bounds (~2' diameter) and is drought-tolerant once established. I got a 6-pack to stop erosion where the sloping rose bed meets the sidewalk, and loved it so much I've added more around all the garden borders. Beautiful, springy green foliage, heat-tolerant (it's regularly triple-digits and dry here in Fresno). Highly-recommended.


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

Set it and forget it. It spreads politely, covers unsightly cement breezeblocks set as steps, and stays green all year. Doesn't need mowing. Why aren't we all growing this?
It is a little too polite, and would take forever to cover the whole yard. Or would it????
I have it next to wooly thyme. The line has held fairly firm for 3 years. They are duking it out exceedingly slowly.


On Dec 16, 2008, DenverJude from Denver, CO (Zone 5b) wrote:

I have this growing at the exposed corner edge of my backyard perennial border here in Denver (zone 5b). It has been thriving without supplemental irrigation and has been survived the last 2 winters without difficulty.

This plant not only survived a 3rd winter, but it survived the -20 degrees we had for nearly a week last spring. It even stayed green most of the winter. It has spread nicely around my other plants in the area to cover even more ground and is doing a fantastic job of smothering weeds!

I think the zone chart should be amended to include zone 5b or at least zone 6a (mine is growing in a somewhat sheltered spot).


On Nov 11, 2003, Michaelp from Glendale, UT (Zone 5a) wrote:

Used medicinally for anti-spasmodic effect on the urinary tract. The leaves and flowering stems are made into an infusion (must NOT be boiled) for treating inflammation of the bladder, kidney stones and prostate; however, it MUST be used fresh.