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Galium odoratum
  • Galium odoratum is a durable deer proof shade groundcover
  • Sweet Woodruff is a vigorous ground cover under trees
  • Galium odoratum grows well near black walnut trees

Galium odoratum

Deer proof shade groundcover for tough areas!
Item: #GAIOD1Q
ZONE 4,5,6,7,8,9
As low as $12.19
  • Fast growing shade groundcover
  • Excellent for steep hills & around trees (particularly black walnuts)
  • Thrives in moisture retentive soil
  • Scented foliage
  • Deer & rabbit proof
  • Can grow up to 2 feet wide!
  • Ship size: Jumbo 1 Quart
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Galium odoratum Description

Galium or sweet woodruff is a durable deer proof shade loving groundcover providing handsome leaves all season.

Sweet woodruff is not shy about vigor. It tends to weave through the garden easily choking out pesky weeds. Excellent for controlling erosion on steep shaded banks and beneath trees  and shrubs (especially Walnut Trees) where other shade groundcovers fail.

Galium has aromatic evergreen to semi-evergreen leaves all season. The crushed leaves emit a fragrance of freshly mown hay and when dried, lends fragrance to linens, sachets, & potpourris.

In spring, clusters of small white star shaped blooms adorn the handsome leaves.

Galium is best in a shaded site with moisture retentive soil that does not dry out.  Give it a site where it is at home weaving through the garden.

This hard working groundcover works well beneath shrubs such as hydrangeas and vines.

Special features: Attracts butterflies, Cut foliage,  Deer resistant, Dried flowers, Easy care, Evergreen, Fast growing, Foliage interest, Fragrance, Moisture tolerant, Pest resistance, Rabbit resistant, Tolerates foot traffic

Quick Facts

  • Botanical name:
    Galium odoratum
  • Common name:
    Sweet woodruff
  • Zone:
  • Sun exposure:
    Part shade, Shade
  • Delivery:
    See schedule
  • Ship form:
    1 quart
  • Soil type:
    Normal, Clay
  • Soil moisture:
    Average, Moist
  • Height x width:
    6-12" X 12-24"
  • Flower color:
  • Foliage color:
  • Bloom season:
  • Uses:
    Alpine and rock, Edging, Erosion control or embankment, Ground cover, Massing, Naturalizing, Rain garden, Rock garden, Slopes, Under planting, Waterside, Woodland
  • Cannot ship to:
    AK, HI
  • Patent #: None



Soil: Easily grown in average, medium to wet, well-drained soils.
Light: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium to wet  
Spacing:  0.75 to 1.50 feet
Fertilizing: In average soils, none needed. In poor soils a light
application of time release fertilizer in spring is enough.
Winterizing: No specific care needed
Maintenance & pruning: Spreads by both creeping roots and self-seeding to form an attractive ground cover in moist, shady areas. Can be somewhat aggressive in optimum growing conditions. Where restraint becomes necessary, plants can be mowed with a rotary mower on a high setting, or can be easily pulled from areas where you don't want them. Plants may go dormant by mid-summer if improperly grown in dry, sunny locations. Can dig and move clumps in early spring when new growth appears.


Write a review
Sweet Woodruff - Disappointing
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Patrice Baker  |  Jun 26, 2020
I thought this would be a great groundcover for my partial shade area. I purchased two of them. It says on the website that this plant is hardy into zone 9 which is where I live. The plant stake that came with the woodruff says zone 8. These plants have not done well at all. Both have not thrived. They are very fragile and have basically dried up. So sad and disappointing. I have other plants from Great Garden Plants that are doing very well.... just not these.

Terrific Plants & Packaging.
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Gordon L.  |  Jun 30, 2016
This is my first order from your nursery— and my initial words upon opening the freight boxes were — WOW! What a terrific packaging plan.  Then I saw the plants and was equally impressed with their quality and how they were each carefully prepped for shipping.  You’ve got me for a repeat customer!  Keep up the great work— it’s hard to find nurseries that do what you do.