What kind of plant is this?

Asked May 28, 2016, 1:41 PM EDT

Hi! I'm wondering if you can help me identify this plant. I got it as a gift a couple of years ago, and it's getting a little out of control. Wanted to figure out what it is so I can figure out how to care for it.

Salt Lake County Utah plant identification

1 Response

Looks like Swedish ivy (Plectranthus australis), also known as Creeping Charlie. You can get tips on care (moist soil but well-drained soil, bright indirect light; propagate from cuttings; can also be used as an annual in the garden) from The Missouri Botanical Garden:


And you can browse popular houseplants here:


Tips for propagating from cuttings:

From Cuttings

  1. Take leafy cuttings from new growth, a few inches long
  2. Strip or prune off bottom leaves, leaving three or four at the top
  3. Insert into moist potting soil
  4. Place in bright but indirect light
  5. Cover with a plastic "tent" or cut-off soda bottle to retain humidity
  6. Keep moist, not wet

NOTES

  • Some annual cuttings root readily in water; follow all the other directions
  • Dipping cut ends into "rooting hormones" may increase the number of cuttings that will root in soil


If you want to get a fresh start, you can prune the whole thing down leaving each stem about 4" long:

"A trim is order when creeping Charlie becomes straggly or overgrown at any point throughout the growing season. Trim back the stems to just before a leaf set if you want to maintain a certain shape or plant size -- this is especially necessary if you have limited space or want to keep cascading stems out of reach of pets or children. A more severe trim might be required if the growth becomes uneven or unattractive. Trim the entire plant back so each stem measures 3 to 4 inches long, and the creeping Charlie will regrow with a much fuller, even appearance. Pinch back stem tips to encourage even fuller growth. Stems are tender enough that you can pinch them with your fingers, but if you prefer to use hand pruners, disinfect them in a solution of diluted bleach with 1 part bleach to 9 parts water."