Leptinella squalida Platt's Black

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Plant Code: LEPB

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Tiny fern-like foliage is smoky bronze purple with hints of green. An attractive ever-spreading soft mat will tolerate light foot traffic. Perfect for around stepping stones and as a groundcover. Quickly spreads by runners. Dark green flowers in early summer are the ‘buttons’.

This variety was formerly known as Cotula squalida, a.k.a. Creeping Cotula. Leptinella may tolerate more shade than shown.


Type: Perennials, Groundcovers
Height: Short 3"
Spacing: Plant 12" apart
Bloom Time: Early Summer to Mid-Summer
Sun-Shade: Full Sun to Half Sun / Half Shade
Zones: 5-9   Find Your Zone
Soil Condition: Normal, Acidic
Flower: Green
Pot Size: 3.5" square x 4" deep

Features to Note

  • For a Slope or Bank
  • Edgers
  • Groundcovers
  • Foot Traffic Tolerant
  • Wet Site Tolerant

Leptinella General Information

Leptinella with its finely-cut lacy foliage resembles the tiniest ferns, but is actually a relative of the sunflower and the insignificant green button-shaped blooms look like the centers of sunflowers. Will die back in winter, but springs back to life in April to form a dense, lush groundcover. Idaho has restricted all potted plant material from being shipped into Idaho at this time.

Leptinella Plant Care

Leptinella prefers a rich acidic soil. Shallow rooted, so occasional feeding is recommended. Plants will spread indefinitely by underground runners. Requires some moisture in well-drained soils – intolerant of drought.