Pussytoes makes a nice ground cover for dry, open, shady areas. The common name comes from the flowers' resemblance to the toes/pads on cat paws. It is dioecious; this means that the male and female flowers are on separate plants and you'll need both in order to get viable seed. However, pussytoes spreads by short stolons (specialized shoots that let a single plant spread to form a colony--think of strawberry runners) and doesn't rely solely on seed for reproduction.
Pussytoes makes a nice filler in container gardens.
Sometimes you can find black caterpillars with black spines and white spots on pussytoes. This is the butterfly larva of the American Painted Lady which can be found throughout Missouri from March through November.
Uses: ground cover, butterflies, small bees, container gardens, deer tolerant
Bloom time: April & May
Height: ground-hugging foliage; flower stems 6 to 10" tall
Space: 6 - 10 inches
Sun: Sun to medium shade
Moisture: Dry to average
Seed: Sow fresh seed as soon as available (usually by June). Some seed will germinate within a month, and the rest will germinate the following spring. These tiny seeds will need light to germinate, so do not cover them.
- 200+ seeds per packet
- 275,000 seeds per ounce
- 0.25 oz. per 2,000 square feet