Soleirolia soleirolii faq

Soleirolia soleirolii FAQ

Soleirolia soleirolii (Mind Your Own Business, Mother of Thousands)

Q. What is Soleirolia soleirolii?
A. Mind Your Own Business is a creeping perennial and hides a multitude of sins in the home and garden. Use it to soften cracks in paving, to provide ground cover in shady beds and borders, and to fill space in hanging baskets and pots displays.

It makes an attractive and maintenance-free alternative to grass as ground cover in moist, shady areas. It’s also suitable for use in green walls, and as a substitute for moss in a Japanese garden.

As it covers the ground it will run over rocks, fallen logs, and so on, clinging to their shape so the features of the landscape are picked out. The overall height is a mere 5cm (2in) but spread is indefinite.

Soleirolia round pond2

Here it is, in all its glory, adorning the beds of our Jungle pond.

Q. How do I grow Soleirolia soleiroli?
A. Make a small hole in the soil slightly larger than the root ball either by hand or using a trowel. Insert the plant into the hole and press soil firmly around the roots and just covering the root ball. When all the plants are potted, water thoroughly to settle the soil and give plants a good start. Place the plant in a reliably sunny location.

Q. What type of soil does it need?
A. Start with a good quality, commercial potting soil. These are usually lighter in weight than topsoil, sterile and pest-free. Many are available with a mild starter fertiliser in the mix. Allow for drainage.

Q. Are they hardy?
A. Its delicate charm conceals a surprisingly rugged plant. Soleirolia soleirolii survives periodic dry spells and recovers quickly afterwards, and prefers medium light.

Q. Where do I plant a Soleirolia soleiroli?
A. Hanging baskets, beds, borders, rockeries, walls or anywhere that a space needs filling!

Q. How much pruning does my Soleirolia soleiroli? require?
A. Most container plants can be pruned freely to maintain the desired size and shape. Keeping the foliage trimmed also keeps the plants looking neat and tidy, encourages the plant to develop more side-shoots and flowers, and reduces the demand for the plant to develop a larger root system. This is important since the roots are in a confined space.

Q. Do I need to feed my Soleirolia soleiroli?
A. Slow-release fertilizers are an especially good, care-free choice for container plants. A single application can often provide plants with the proper level of nutrition all season long.

Q. How often do i water my Soleirolia soleiroli?
A. Prefers moist but well-drained soil. Check the soil moisture with your finger. If the top 2-4” (5-10cm) of soil is dry, or plants are wilted, it is time to water.

Apply water at the soil level if possible to avoid wetting the foliage. Water the entire soil area until water runs out the base of the pot. This indicates that the soil is thoroughly wet.

Q. Should I be worried about it spreading?
A. Although many gardeners like to encourage Mind Your Own Business between cracks in patios, it can get out of hand and spread to borders and lawns.

The thin, fleshy, branched stems root as they slowly spread. This is a difficult plant to control, as it regenerates easily from any small sections of stem, over-looked when weeding or hoeing.

In borders and other parts of the garden, mind-your-own-business should be eradicated as thoroughly as possible by burying it deeply with mulch, or hoeing it off repeatedly in dry weather.

Where Soleirolia soleiroli is widespread in lawns, lightly scarify several times during March and April and again during September to weaken it. Feed the lawn regularly to encourage turf vigour and density.

Available in the Nurseries now.

With thanks to the RHS and Gardeners World

Create your Japanese Garden with our new blog

Back to Top