Bacopa - How to Grow and Care for Bacopa Plants


The delicate pastel flowers and finely textured foliage of bacopa plants belie its tough nature. Whether used as a cascading accent in a hanging basket or a sprawling ground cover in the landscape, bacopa combines well with other plants and is virtually carefree, making it a versatile choice for home gardeners.

On this page: The Basics | Planting Tips | Bacopa Care | Pictures | Design Ideas

  • BASICS
  • PLANTING TIPS
  • BACOPA CARE
  • VARIETIES
  • DESIGN IDEAS

THE BASICS

Snowstorm® Giant Snowflake® bacopa. (Sutera cordata).
Photo by Proven Winners.

Zones:

Generally grown as an annual, but may overwinter in Zones 9-11

Height/spread:

Mounding trailing habit, 3 to 12 inches tall, 10 to 36 inches wide

Exposure:

Full sun to partial shade; bloom is most prolific in full sun

Bloom time:

From the time of planting until frost. Bacopa is sensitive to extreme heat and may not bloom as well during the hottest part of summer. Newer varieties are bred for heat resistance.

Color and characteristics:

Dainty dime-sized flowers have a yellow eye, with petals in pastel hues of white, pink, blue, or lavender. Small leaves are rounded with toothed margins, occurring in colors of green, gold, or variegation.

Deer resistance:

Deer will leave bacopa alone for the most part, though extreme conditions can result in deer grazing on plants they wouldn’t otherwise.

PLANTING TIPS

When to plant:

Plant outside in mid-late spring after all danger of frost is past.

Where to plant:

Bacopa plants grow in a sunny to lightly shaded site. Plants will flower best in full sun.

How to plant:

For beds and borders, loosen soil in the planting site, work in soil amendments and space plants 10 to 12 inches apart. For containers, plants can be spaced slightly closer together.

BACOPA CARE

Maintenance:

Flowers are self-cleaning; no deadheading is necessary. Plants can be lightly pruned to size if they become overgrown.

Soil:

For beds and borders, amend soil with compost or other rich organic matter and provide good drainage. Optimal soil pH is 5.6 to 5.9. For containers, use a high quality all-purpose potting soil that drains well.

Watering:

Keep plants evenly moist, but don’t overwater. Unlike most plants, bacopa doesn’t wilt when drought-stressed; instead, the flowers and buds will drop off. It takes a couple of weeks for plants to recover and set new buds. TIP: Place with another plant that does wilt such as coleus, verbena, or petunia, which will serve as an indicator to show when the soil is too dry.

Amendments and fertilizer:

Apply a balanced water-soluble fertilizer according to package instructions every 2 to 3 weeks for landscape plants, or every 1 to 2 weeks for containers.

Diseases and pests:

When grown in the right conditions, bacopa experiences few problems. Possible pests include aphids, spider mites, whiteflies or thrips. Botrytis, powdery mildew, root or stem rot can occur from overwatering or poor drainage.

VARIETIES OF BACOPA

Swipe to view slides

Photo: Proven Winners

Snowstorm® Giant Snowflake® — Buy now from Proven Winners
Sutera cordata

Zones:

9-11, usually grown as an annual

Height/Spread:

Mounding trailing habit, 4 to 8 inches tall, 20 to 36 inches wide, 36 inches long

The clean white flowers go with most other colors and any garden style. The shorter stature and long trailing habit makes this a good choice for hanging baskets and window boxes.

Also try Snowstorm® Snow Globe® for a more mounded globe habit (less trailing) with white flowers.

Photo: Proven Winners

Snowstorm® Pink — Buy now from Proven Winners
S. cordata

Zones:

9-11, usually grown as an annual

Height/Spread:

Mounding trailing habit, 4 to 10 inches tall, 12 to 24 inches wide

The taller stature makes a statement in the landscape as pathway edging or in mass plantings. Use as a stand-alone accent in a basket or in combination with other pastel-hued annuals with similar needs.

For a slightly darker pink, try Snowstorm® Rose.

Photo: Proven Winners

Snowstorm® Blue — Buy now from Proven Winners
S. cordata

Zones:

9-11, usually grown as an annual

Height/Spread:

Mounding trailing habit, 4 to 10 inches tall, 12 to 24 inches wide

Combine the pale lavender-blue flowers with other pastel-hued annuals. Plant in containers or use as edging along a pathway.

For a lighter blue flowering bacopa, try Snowstorm® Glacier Blue™.

Photo: Hort Pics / Millette Photomedia

Scopia® Golden Leaves White
S. cordata

Zones:

9-11, usually grown as an annual

Height/Spread:

Mounding trailing habit, 4 to 6 inches tall and 12 to 18 inches wide

The Scopia® Series was developed for better heat tolerance and more continuous flowering. Use this unique gold-leafed form as an accent in a container in combination with other plants with complementary foliage such as purple coleus or purple fountain grass.

Photo courtesy Ball Seed

Big Falls™ Dark Pink
S. cordata

Zones:

9-11, usually grown as an annual

Height/Spread:

Mounding trailing habit, 8 to 12 inches tall and wide

Dark pink flowers are more intensely colored than most other varieties. Combine with other brightly hued plants to make a dramatic statement in the landscape.

DESIGN IDEAS

Brooklyn Heights container recipe. Photo by Proven Winners.

How to use:

Bacopa is best used as “spiller” element in a container, or as a spreading groundcover in the landscape. Use as pathway edging, in mass plantings, hanging baskets, window boxes, and upright containers.

Pair with silver:

The pastel shades of bacopa flowers combine well with silver-foliaged plants. Place alongside lamb’s ears, dusty miller, Helichrysum ‘Silver Mist’ or ‘Silver Mound’ artemisia for an elegant touch.

Pastel-themed containers:

For a pastel-themed basket, try this Brooklyn Heights recipe (pictured).

Color that packs a punch:

For a brighter look, try this Gettin’ Groovy recipe.

More container ideas:

See more bacopa container recipes.

Companion plants:

Bacopa combines well with many other annuals. When making your own customized containers, use the principle of “thriller, filler, spiller” with the bacopa acting as a spiller element. Companion plants include:

  • Petunia
  • Calibrachoa
  • Verbena
  • Begonia
  • Coleus
  • Angelonia
  • Nemesia
  • Dusty miller
  • Lantana
  • Geranium
  • Purple fountain grass
  • Lobelia

RELATED:
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Annual Flowers to Consider for Your Garden This Year
Building Container Combos


How do you keep Bacopa blooming?

Bacopa Growing Instructions This plant suffers in dry soil so water every day when summer temperatures soar. If allowed to dry out, bacopa will stop blooming and it will take a week or two for it to send out a new crop of flowers. Feed bacopa with a dilute solution of liquid fertilizer at 7 to ten day intervals.

Also, how do you look after a Bacopa plant? For bacopa grown in pots, containers or garden boxes, water regularly as soon as the soil has dried up. Avoid having water stagnate in the saucer because roots detest excess moisture. In summer, feel free to mulch the ground to keep the soil cool and save on water.

Hereof, do you deadhead Bacopa?

One major plus to the rapid growth is that they bury their dead, so there is no need to deadhead old spent blooms. If bacopa dries out even for just a day or two, the plants stop blooming.

Is Bacopa an annual or perennial?

Masses of small, 5-petaled flowers cover bacopa in summer and fall on plants that reach 3 – 6 inches high. Grown as a perennial in zones 9 – 11, bacopa is grown as a annual n in zone 8 gardens and below. Flowering most frequently occurs when temperatures range between 50 – 85 degrees.


Q. Can I bring my bacopa indoors for the winter?

Can bacopa be grown indoors over the winter? If so, do they still bloom? What about fertilizer and light? I hate to let them die every year when they are in full bloom right now, even better than they were for a lot of the summer. I live in Traverse City, MI. It gets very cold here.

Bacopa is an annual and though you certainly could extend it's life by bringing it indoors it will not continuously bloom or winter over for next spring.


  • Agreeable bacopa thrives in sun to part sun.
  • Its trailing tendencies make bacopa a natural for containers, hanging baskets, and as a ground cover.
  • Count on it from spring to fall (bacopa will die in frost).

Above: Photograph by Julie Chai.

Keep soil moist, but not soggy, and you’ll be rewarded with continual flowers.

For more of Julie’s DIY container planting schemes, see:

N.B.: Looking to add perennials to your planters? Our Garden Design 101 guides can help:

  • See more about perennials at Euphorbia 101, Lamb’s Ear 101, and Pelargonium 101.
  • Concerned with water consumption? See Stonecrop 101, which is not only a perennial but also a succulent.


Usage and Advantage of Bacopa monnieri

  • Bacopa monnieri contains potent chemicals that can have antioxidant properties.
  • Research shows that Bacopa monnieri can help enhance brain function.
  • In traditional Ayurvedic medicine, Bacopa monnieri is used to improve memory and to cure different diseases.
  • There is a large list of illnesses that can be treated using brahmi, from respiratory and gastrointestinal issues to loss of memory to leprosy.

How to Winter Bacopa caroliniana In Ponds

Photo by User:BotBln [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons As a subtropical plant, lemon bacopa will not survive outside during the winter. Before the first frost hits, take as many cuttings as you’d like and remove any remaining lemon bacopa that you don’t want from your pond. Place the cuttings in a bright window indoors, either in a container of water or saturated soil. The following spring, you can plant them back in or around your pond.


How do you keep Bacopa blooming?

Bacopa Growing Instructions This plant suffers in dry soil so water every day when summer temperatures soar. If allowed to dry out, bacopa will stop blooming and it will take a week or two for it to send out a new crop of flowers. Feed bacopa with a dilute solution of liquid fertilizer at 7 to ten day intervals.

Furthermore, how do you look after a Bacopa plant? For bacopa grown in pots, containers or garden boxes, water regularly as soon as the soil has dried up. Avoid having water stagnate in the saucer because roots detest excess moisture. In summer, feel free to mulch the ground to keep the soil cool and save on water.

One major plus to the rapid growth is that they bury their dead, so there is no need to deadhead old spent blooms. If bacopa dries out even for just a day or two, the plants stop blooming.

Is Bacopa an annual or perennial?

Masses of small, 5-petaled flowers cover bacopa in summer and fall on plants that reach 3 – 6 inches high. Grown as a perennial in zones 9 – 11, bacopa is grown as a annual n in zone 8 gardens and below. Flowering most frequently occurs when temperatures range between 50 – 85 degrees.


Watch the video: A Bacopa Plant u0026 Winter


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