Aurinia Species, Basket-of-Gold, Gold Alyssum, Gold Dust, Golden Alyssum

Aurinia saxatilis

Family: Brassicaceae (brass-ih-KAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Aurinia (aw-RIN-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: saxatilis (saks-A-til-iss) (Info)
Synonym:Alyssum bilimekii
Synonym:Alyssum ephesium


Alpines and Rock Gardens


Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:



6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

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)

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

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

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Characteristics:

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

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From woody stem cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

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

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


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

San Diego, California

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Golden, Colorado

Lafayette, Indiana

Logansport, Indiana

Des Moines, Iowa

Fort Dodge, Iowa

Oskaloosa, Iowa

Ewing, Kentucky

Dixfield, Maine

Billerica, Massachusetts

Milton, Massachusetts

Ludington, Michigan

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Bloomfield, New Mexico

Brooklyn, New York

Croton On Hudson, New York

Cincinnati, Ohio

Findlay, Ohio

Portland, Oregon

Wakefield, Rhode Island

Sumter, South Carolina

Crossville, Tennessee

Kaysville, Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah(2 reports)

Tremonton, Utah

Port Townsend, Washington(2 reports)

Laramie, Wyoming

Rock Springs, Wyoming

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 17, 2011, tabasco from Cincinnati (Anderson Twp), OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Our second year with six small plants rescued from the Home Depot Orphan Plant Table, unlabled little pathetic things, but they have thrived and I am so happy to grow them in our rock garden. They are welcome early spring bloomers (early April in Zone 6a) that I have paired with short bearded iris, purple/blue columbines, hyacinths, purple-y coral bells, muscari, and wonderful (but invasive in some gardens) chartreuse creeping jenny.

I wanted Basket of Gold originally for their nectar blossoms for early spring butterflies, but they have been so much more for me.


On Apr 25, 2010, JonthanJ from Logansport, IN wrote:

I really enjoy the reliable show of bright golden color here in north central Indiana in April. I think it is underutilized because the tentative growth of the seedlings is so unlike the blast of color the mature plant gives. Probably best thought of as a very short shrub.


On Mar 13, 2010, lehua_mc from Portland, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

Sort of a ubiquitous spring bling sidewalk plant here in Portland, along with Iberis sempervirens. I grew mine by direct seeding last spring, where the little guys quickly got overshadowed! Still they hung tough, and are a constant earmark in the winter garden (thriving without their competitors.) They didn't flower for me the first year (too young), but now in March they are starting their first tentative show of flowers, a yellow to match the daffodils. I liked the tenacity of the ever green-gray foliage enough to start more seeds this season so I can underplant a few open frame shrubs and roses that get swamped by stoloniferous grasses (and then escape the mower).


On May 20, 2008, JuniorMintKiss from Tremonton, UT (Zone 6a) wrote:

I've just enjoyed the look and bounteousness of this hardy perennial plant! When the flower is finished blooming for the season, the green leaves and woody stems stay behind to provide ample coverage. Because I wasn't sure what this plant was last year, I didn't prune or cut back the dead foilage. But it bounced back this year and has done well. My alyssum is somewhat invasive; it has spread a little into my gravel driveway, but that's proof enough that it can withstand extreme conditions such as poor/rocky soil, lack of water, and pet traffic (my dog is always running through them!) This would be a perfect choice for a rock garden or if you're strapped for water. A pleasant aroma as well.


On Nov 16, 2004, RDT from Crossville, TN (Zone 6b) wrote:

This plant grows and blooms in partial shade. I use it as a border along my North walkway. It stays gray-green all winter.


On Mar 28, 2001, quynh from Olympia, WA wrote:

evergreen shrubby perennial, vigorous and mat forming habit. Produces profuse golden-yellow clusters which cover the entire plant. Leaves are long oval shape and grey green.
other varieties include
'Citrinum' (lemon-yellow flowers),
'Compactum' (dense and compact),
'Dudley Neville' (buff-yellow flowers, very silvery leaves and compact)
'Plenum' (Flore Pleno'; double flowers and compact)
*variety descriptions from The Gardeners Palette

Soil: any well drain type prefers alkaline, lime-enriched
Sun: full sun
Other: cut back after flowering to maintain compactness and improve later blooms. ultra hardy.


On Nov 27, 2000, gardener_mick from Wentworth, SD (Zone 4a) wrote:

Also known as Aurinia saxatilis. Basket of Gold is a perennial alyssum in zones 3-10. It grows 10" tall and needs to be spaced 9-12" apart. The flowers are golden yellow and the foliage is silvery gray. The leaves are covered with smooth, silvery hairs. They flower in early to mid spring. Plant in a well-drained, dry soil in full sun. The tiny flowers are massed above cleft leaves that are 3" long and lance shaped. This plant spreads quickly and produces a large amount of flowers every spring. After the flowers are faded, cut back by 1/3 to encourage the plant to rebloom.
This is a very easy to care for plant. They are excellent for rock gardens and borders, or cascading over a rock wall.
-'Citrina'- pale yellow flowers
-'Plena'- deep yello... read more