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Blue Star Creeper, also called Laurentia fluviatilis, is a low, ground-covering plant known for its attractive light-blue, star-shaped blooms and its small, pointed, oval leaves. Native to Australia, New Zealand, Asia, the Blue Star Creeper is considered an evergreen, perennial or hardy annual, depending on its geographic location. This plant thrives well in both cool and hot climates, and in the US is recommended for planting in USDA hardiness zones 5 – 10. While the Laurentia fluviatilis is considered the "true" Blue Star Creeper, several similar plants are also sold under the name, including Pratia angulata and Pratia pedunculata.
The blooms of the Blue Star Creeper are unscented, but remain in bloom for most of the season, usually until the first frost. Flowers start to appear in late spring to early summer, and at maturity reach a diameter of about 0.375 inches (0.9 cm). While the blooms of Laurentia fluviatilis are light blue or sky blue, there exists a version of Laurentia with dark blue flowers, which may appeal to some gardeners. The foliage of the Blue Star Creeper is medium green.
Once established, the plant tolerates drought fairly well, but prefers moist soil; gardeners should take care not to overwater, and to plant in fertile soil with good drainage. In cool climates, Blue Star Creeper prefers full sun exposure, while in warmer climates it requires partial shade. At its maturity, the plant will reach 1 to 3 inches (about 2.5 to 7.6 cm) tall and will sprawl 1 to 1.5 feet (0.3 to 0.45 m) wide.
Although it can take up to a year to establish in a yard or garden, the Blue Star Creeper is heralded among gardeners as a rugged ground-hugger, nearly as durable as grass. It is a relatively low-maintenance plant that can be easily grown by even novice gardeners. Because it tolerates moderate to heavy foot traffic, it is often used as a lawn substitute, as a ground cover near swimming pools and as filler between stepping stones.
This plant won't creep over stones, so it is often used in rock gardens as well. Landscapers should beware of placing it in traditional flower gardens because it can overtake smaller plants. Blue Star Creeper is excellent, however, for planting over bulbs, such as tulips or daffodils, because it will shade the roots of the bulbs without inhibiting growth.
Blue Star Creeper is relatively simple to care for, as it requires only a small amount of pruning, and only if the gardener prefers not to let the plant grow freely. When pruning, gardeners should take care to wear gloves, as the plant has been known to irritate sensitive skin. In the winter, mulch can be placed around the plant to protect it from the cold, but this is not necessary; Blue Star Creeper fares well through most winter weather, losing its flowers but retaining its green leaves. Pests and disease rarely affect this plant.
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