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FutureStarrWoodland phlox deer resistant
Woodland phlox is a perfect native-plant option for gardens with dappled shade. It belongs to the Polemoniaceae family, as does Jacob's ladder (Polemonium caeruleum). Since this perennial grows wild, you may not be as familiar with it as you are with the commonly cultivated types of phlox, but it does belong to the same genus.
If you live in eastern North America and seek blue flowers for a dappled-shade garden featuring native plants, then woodland phlox is an excellent choice. These flowers, each with five small flat petals, will vary greatly in their blue tones. Some petals will be light purple, violet, violet-blue, and even a lighter blue; still, others will be rosy lavender, pale pink, or white. Many but not all of the phlox's leaves will be covered in sticky glandular hairs that produce protective oils for the plant.Woodland phlox grows in flecked patches of shade in its native woodlands in eastern North America. It is curiously absent from most of New England, though: It is native only to Vermont and Connecticut in that region. If you live elsewhere but find this perennial attractive, consider trying to naturalize it in your landscape. The species name divaricata translates from the Latin as "spreading," but it is not considered an invasive plant.
More generally, treat it as a flowering ground cover or edging plant, especially where you need color specifically for spring. A potential drawback of using it as a ground cover is that it does not stay as short as many of the more conventional ground covers. Woodland phlox is known to be a plant that attracts butterflies. It is also considered a flower worth including in hummingbird gardens. Native to eastern North America, Phlox divaricata (Woodland Phlox) is a semi-evergreen, spreading wildflower which creates mats of abundant, open clusters of slightly fragrant flowers in mid to late spring. Each scented, saucer-shaped flower features five, flat, notched, petal-like lobes in shades of lilac, rose or blue. Borne at the tip of hairy and sticky stems, they rise enthusiastically above the lance-shaped foliage. (Source: www.gardenia.net)