Most of the growing season, lily-of-the-valley is a ground cover, with 6-inch-long leaves that are pointed at the tip and fold slightly lengthwise.
In spring, it bears tiny, very fragrant, waxy, white bell-shaped flowers along a stem nestled in the leaves. It spreads once established and can become invasive; plant it in a contained area, such as between a building and walkway.Notable VarietiesFlowers are usually white, but 'Rosea' is light pinkCareProvide rich soil with plenty of compost and ample moisture. Leaves will brown if conditions are too sunny in warm climates or too dry in any climate. However, good drainage is important. Little care needed, other than diligent watering and pulling up plants two or three times a year around the perimeter of a planting that are out of bounds.PlantingPlant established plants or "pips" (root portions) in spring or fall, working plenty of compost into the soil. Space about 6 to 8 inches apart.Pests and DiseasesRoot rot a problem if drainage is poor.