Trailing lantana ground cover


Weeping Lantana, Trailing Lantana ‘Monswee’




Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:

Unknown – Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown – Tell us


Seed is poisonous if ingested

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Flowers are fragrant

Bloom Size:

Unknown – Tell us

Bloom Time:

Blooms repeatedly

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Patent expired

Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Glen Avon, California

Pedley, California

Rubidoux, California

Sunnyslope, California

Lutz, Florida

Las Vegas, Nevada

Richmond, Texas

Weatherford, Texas

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Lantana Ground Cover Plants: Tips On Using Lantana As A Ground Cover

Lantana is a gorgeous, vividly colored butterfly magnet that blooms abundantly with little attention. Most lantana plants reach heights of 3 to 5 feet, so lantana as a ground cover doesn’t sound very practical – or does it? If you live in USDA plant hardiness zone 9 or above, trailing lantana plants make wonderful year-round ground covers. Read on to learn more about lantana ground cover plants.

Is Lantana a Good Ground Cover?

Trailing lantana plants, native to Southern Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Bolivia, work exceptionally well as a ground cover in warm climates. They grow fast, reaching heights of only 12 to 15 inches. Trailing lantana plants are extremely heat- and drought-tolerant. Even if the plants look a little worse for wear during hot, dry weather, a good watering will bring them back very quickly.

Botanically, trailing lantana are known as either Lantana sellowiana or Lantana montevidensis. Both are correct. However, although lantana loves heat and sunlight, it isn’t crazy about cold and will be nipped when the first frost rolls around in autumn. Keep in mind you can still plant trailing lantana plants if you live in a cooler climate, but only as annuals.

Lantana Ground Cover Varieties

Purple trailing lantana is the most common type of Lantana montevidensis. It is a slightly hardier plant, suitable for planting in USDA zones 8 through 11. Others include:

  • L. montevidensis ‘Alba,’ also known as white trailing lantana, produces clusters of sweetly scented, pure white flowers.
  • L. montevidensis ‘Lavender Swirl’ produces a profusion of large blooms that emerge white, gradually turning pale lavender, then deepening to a more intense shade of purple.
  • L. montevidensis ‘White Lightnin’ is a resilient plant that produces hundreds of pure white blooms.
  • L. montevidensis ‘Spreading White’ produces lovely white bloom in spring, summer and autumn.
  • New Gold (Lantana camara x L. montevidensis – is a hybrid plant with clusters of vivid, golden-yellow blooms. At 2 to 3 feet, this is a slightly taller, mounding plant that spreads to 6 to 8 feet in width.

Note: Trailing lantana can be a bully and may be considered an invasive plant in certain areas. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Office before planting if aggressiveness is a concern.

Lantana White Plant

The growing and care of lantanas (Lantana camara) is easy. These verbena-like flowers have long since been admired for their extended bloom time.

There are several varieties available that offer a multitude of colors. Depending on the region and type grown, lantana plants can be treated as annuals or perennials. Grow lantana flowers in the garden or in containers. Trailing varieties can even be grown in hanging baskets. Lantanas also make a great choice for those wishing to attract butterflies and hummingbirds to the garden.

How to Grow Lantana Flowers
Growing lantana in the garden is a great way to add color and interest. Simply choose a sunny location and plant them in well-draining soil. Although these plants are tolerant of many soil conditions, lantana flowers prefer slightly acidic soil. Mulching with pine needles is an easy way to raise pH levels in areas with low acid.

Lantanas are planted in spring once the threat of cold weather and frost have ceased. Keep in mind, however, that they prefer warm temperatures so new growth may be slow to appear. Once the temperatures warm up though, they will grow abundantly.

Caring for Lantana Plants

  • While newly planted lantanas require frequent watering, once established, these plants require little maintenance and are even tolerant of somewhat dry conditions. In fact, a good soaking about once a week should keep them relatively happy.
  • Although it isn’t required, lantana plants can be given a light dose of fertilizer each spring, but too much may inhibit their overall flowering.
  • To encourage reblooming, cut the tips (deadhead) periodically. Overgrown plants can be given new life by cutting back a third of their growth. They will bounce back quickly. Regular pruning of the plant usually takes place in spring.

Common Problems with Growing Lantanas

  • While lantanas are not affected by too many problems, you may encounter them on occasion.
  • Powdery mildew can become a problem if the plant is not given enough light. In addition, the plant may develop root rot if it is kept too wet.
  • Sooty mold is a condition that causes black discoloration on the leaves and is most often attributed to insect pests, such as whiteflies.
  • Other common pests that affect lantana plants include lace bugs, which cause the foliage to turn gray or brown and then drop off.

Lantana montevidensis ‘Alba’ (White Trailing Lantana) – A low-growing mat-forming plant that grows to 2 feet tall and trails to 10 feet with slightly-hairy green strongly-scented small leaves and puts forth a seemingly year-round display of numerous lightly-fragrant white flowers held in a circular head about 1 and 1/2 inches wide. The individual flowers, not quite 1/2 inch wide, have a yellow throat and open from the outside of the inflorescence first and then towards the center. It thrives in full sun or light shade and is drought tolerant, deer resistant, tolerant of seaside conditions and is hardy down to about 20 degrees F and can rebound from below ground from temperatures approaching 10°F (USDA Zone 8) . In cold weather the foliage can take on an odd blackish-purple cast. The purple species is a tough old time groundcover that blooms all the time in Southern California and this white form is just as good and as with the species, when in bloom attracts bees and butterflies. Deer also seem to leave it alone as do Lantana Lace Bug (Teleonemia scrupulosa, which plague the larger growing Lantana camara and L. hybrida selections. The species is native to South America from Bolivia, Uruguay, Paraguay, Argentina and southern Brazil and was first described in 1825 as Lippia montevidensis from a collection in Bolivia by the German botanist Curt Polycarp Joachim Sprengel but was reclassified as Lantana montevidensis by the Swiss botanist John Isaac Briquet in 1904. The name for the genus comes from a Latin name for plants in the genus Viburnum because of the similar inflorescence structure and the specific epithet comes from the location in Montevideo, Uruguay where the plant was found. This plant was also described as Lippia sellowiana in 1826 and has long been called Lantana sellowiana – this name to honor the German botanist Friedrich Sellow (or Sello) but Lantana montevidensis is considered correct. This white flowered form had been collected in the wild as early as 1944 in Brazil and was called forma albiflora and may be the same as the form Monrovia Nursery named ‘Monma’ and introduced in 1990. We have been growing this plant since 1992 and also grow the purple flowering form Lantana montevidensis. The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery’s garden and in other gardens that we have observed it in. We also will incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that might aid others in growing Lantana montevidensis ‘Alba’.

Lantana ‘New Gold’ (New Gold Lantana) – An evergreen low growing semi-hardy groundcover shrub that grows 18 to 24 1inches tall by 6 feet wide or more with densely held medium green foliage that have a decorative rugose texture. From spring through fall appear a profusion of rich golden yellow flowers in tight 1 inch wide clusters and, with its near sterility, the flowers rarely produce any seed, so are self-cleaning and the plant more florally prolific. Plant in full to mostly full sun in most any soil type and water occasionally – though not a summer dry plant in our mediterranean climate, it does not require as much water as one would think given its more tropical origins. It is evergreen in frost-free climates down to 25 °F and in Texas A&M field trials this plant proved to be root hardy to 10° F and useful with mulch down into USDA Zone 7. It reportedly is tolerant of reflected heat, smog, poor soil, coastal and dry conditions as well as being resistant to predation by deer and rabbits. If in a cold region it can be pruned back hard in early spring to rejuvenate and this is a good time to prune if trying to control its size and keep an eye out for white fly, which can plague Lantana camara varieties some years. With its wide spreading growth and attractive long flowering period, this is an excellent plant to use as low shrub or groundcover on a slope or as a border planting. It is also nice spilling out of container specimen or hanging basket and it is a pollinator magnet, attracting butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds. In Auburn University research studies it was determined to be one of the most attractive lantanas for butterflies with ‘New Gold’, and ‘Radiation’ having significantly more visits in late summer and fall than other varieties. The Georgia Gold Medal Plant Program noted that “The golden yellow flowers are best showcased by deep blue plants such as Salvia guaranitica (planted behind), or Scaevola ‘Blue Wonder’ (planted in front).” This cultivar was reported by many to be a hybrid between the more subtropical North American species, Lantana camara, and the South American trailing Lantana montevidensis, but it most closely resembles Lantana camara and its hybrid parentage has not been confirmed by taxonomic evidence. The name for the genus comes from a Latin name for plants in the genus Viburnum because of the similar inflorescence structure and the specific epithet ‘camara’ is a Mexican or South American vernacular name (some claim it to be derived from Greek word meaning “arched”, “chambered” or “vaulted”) and the specific epithet montevidensis from the location in Montevideo, Uruguay where Lantana montevidensis is found. Allan Armitage while at the University of Georgia, was one of the first to note the merits of Lantana ‘New Gold’ in 1995 while writing about plants that could help promote the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. He also co-authored an article with Holly Scoggins titled “Lantana: Is it just me or do a lot of these things look the same?” in The University of Georgia Publication Georgia Floriculture that noted that ‘New Gold’ and ‘Gold Mound’ are identical with a very similar flower to the more upright ‘Patriot Moonshine’. It is an award winning plant by many university plant programs, including being a 1995 Georgia Gold Medal winner, a 1996 Mississippi Medallion winner, a 1997 Texas Superstar winner, a 2000 Arkansas Select winner. One reason for its popularity is that it near sterile, which benefits in multiple ways. For one the black berries of Lantana are poisonous to stock animals and humans and the lack of this fruit lessons concerns about this but also Lantana camara, which was first introduced into Europe as an ornamental plant around 1650 and is now naturalized in at least 60 countries and in many is is considered an invasive pest plant, so the lack of fruit on this cultivar is also beneficial because it does not reseed. In a study published in Hort Science by David M. Czarnecki, Amanda J. Hershberger, Carol D. Robacker, David G. Clark and Zhanao Deng that was titled “Ploidy Levels and Pollen Stainability of Lantana camara Cultivars and Breeding Lines” it was determined that New Gold was a triploid with extremely low pollen stainability, which translates it being close if not acutally self sterile. The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery’s garden and in other gardens that we have observed it in. We also will incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that might aid others in growing Lantana ‘New Gold’.

Lantana ‘New Gold’ (Yellow sage ‘New Gold’)

Botanical name

Lantana ‘New Gold’

Other names

Yellow sage ‘New Gold’, Lantana camara ‘New Gold’, Lantana montevidensis ‘New Gold’


Lantana Lantana

Variety or Cultivar

‘New Gold’ _ ‘New Gold’ is a tender, compact, mound-forming, evergreen shrub, sometimes grown as an annual or warm season perennial, with ovate, wrinkled, toothed, dark green leaves and clusters of salver-shaped, golden-yellow flowers from late spring into autumn. Flowers are followed by spherical, glossy, black fruit.

Native to

Garden origin




Leaves have an unpleasant scent when crushed.

Compact, Cushion or Mound Forming


All part, particularly seeds, are toxic if injested. Contact with foliage may cause skin irritation.

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Golden-yellow in Spring; Golden-yellow in Summer; Golden-yellow in Autumn

Dark-green in All seasons

How to care

Watch out for


If grown indoors.

Specific pests

Glasshouse red spider mite , Glasshouse whitefly

Specific diseases

Powdery mildew

General care


Group 9


Rarely produces viable seed.

Propagation methods

Softwood cuttings

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Where to grow

Lantana ‘New Gold’ (Yellow sage ‘New Gold’) will reach a height of 0.5m and a spread of 0.9m after 5-10 years.

Suggested uses

Banks and Slopes, City, Cottage/Informal, Ground Cover, Low Maintenance, Mediterranean

In frost-free conditions, grow outdoors in fertile, moist but well-drained soil in full sun. Under glass, grow in loam-based compost in full light. In growth, water freely & feed fortnightly. Keep just moist in winter.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral


Full Sun





UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Indoor heated (H1), Tender in frost (H3)

USDA zones

Zone 11, Zone 10, Zone 9, Zone 8

Defra’s Risk register #1

Plant name

Lantana ‘New Gold’ (Yellow sage ‘New Gold’)

Common pest name

grape ground pearl

Scientific pest name

Margarodes vitis



Current status in UK


Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

Impact (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

General biosecurity comments

Main pathway; Vitis spp. plants for planting; already prohibited. However; further consideration of other pathways is required.

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read “Don’t risk it” advice here

Suspected outbreak?

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit:

Weeds of Australia – Biosecurity Queensland Edition Fact Sheet

Lantana montevidensis

Scientific Name

Lantana montevidensis (Spreng.) Briq.


Lippia montevidensis Spreng.Lantana sellowiana Link & Otto



Common Names

creeping lantana, purple lantana, Sellow’s lantana, small lantana, trailing lantana, trailing shrubverbena, weeping lantana, wild verbena


Native to South America (i.e. Bolivia, Uruguay, Paraguay, Argentina and southern Brazil).


This species has been widely cultivated as a garden ornamental. Various modern cultivars and hybrids, which are often sterile, are still planted as groundcovers in gardens. The most commonly seen include lilac-coloured and white-coloured cultivars that are similar to the typical form of the species, except that they are sterile. Sterile cultivars with golden-yellow flowers are also common, but these are actually hybrids involving Lantana montevidensis and Lantana camara . These hybrids are usually named after one of the two parent species (e.g. Lantana montevidensis ‘Pot of Gold’ and Lantana camara ‘New Gold’).

Naturalised Distribution

This species is widely naturalised in eastern Australia (i.e. in eastern Queensland and some parts of eastern New South Wales). It is most common and widespread in the coastal and sub-coastal districts of south-eastern and central Queensland. Possibly also naturalised in the Northern Territory.

Also naturalised in many other parts of the world, including New Zealand, Hawaii, New Caledonia and southern USA (i.e. California, Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia and Florida).


Largely found in tropical and sub-tropical environments, and occasionally also in temperate and semi-arid regions. Primarily a weed of pastures, open woodlands, hillsides, railways, roadsides, embankments, disturbed sites and waste areas.


Distinguishing Features

  • a low-growing, long-lived, shrubby plant forming dense mats of vegetation over the ground.
  • its leaves are borne in pairs along the slender, unarmed, creeping stems.
  • its small tubular flowers are borne in compact clusters (1-4 cm across).
  • these flowers (8-12 mm long and 4-8 mm across) are usually pink, mauve or purple with a white or yellowish coloured throat.
  • its reddish-purple to purple ‘berries’ are 6-8 mm across and contain a single hard seed.

Stems and Leaves

The slender stems (1-2 mm thick) are four-angled (i.e. quadrangular) at first, but become woody (about 5 mm thick) and more or less cylindrical as they mature. These stems grow to about 1 m long and form dense mats over the ground surface. They sometimes also produce roots at their joints (i.e. nodes) where they come into contact with the soil.

Flowers and Fruit

The small tubular flowers (8-12 mm long and 4-8 mm across) are borne in dense clusters (1-4 cm across). The flowers on the outer edges of these clusters open first, with the others opening successively inwards. Individual flowers are borne on short stalks (i.e. pedicels) all originating from the same point at the top of a longer flowering stem (i.e. peduncle) 2-8 cm long. The flowers are initially pink, mauve or pale purple with a white or yellowish coloured throat. As they age they change colour slightly, generally become entirely purple. Flowering occurs throughout most of the year.

The fruit is a single-seeded fleshy ‘berry’ (i.e. drupe). These fruit (6-8 mm across) are green at first and turn pinkish, reddish-purple or purplish in colour as they mature. The pale seeds are stony and about 4 mm long.

Note: some garden cultivars of this species do not produce fruit.

Reproduction and Dispersal

This plant reproduces by seed, which are dispersed when the fleshy fruit are eaten by birds and other animals. It also spreads across the ground laterally, occasionally rooting at the stem joints (i.e. nodes). Seeds and stem segments are occasionally dispersed in dumped garden waste.

Environmental Impact

Creeping lantana (Lantana montevidensis) is regarded as a significant environmental weed Queensland and as an environmental weed in New South Wales. It was also recently listed as a priority environmental weed in at least one Natural Resource Management region.

Other Impacts


This species is declared under legislation in the following states and territories:

  • Queensland: Class 3 – this species is primarily an environmental weed and a pest control notice may be issued for land that is, or is adjacent to, an environmentally significant area (throughout the entire state). It is also illegal to sell a declared plant or its seed in this state. This declaration applies to all lantana species (Lantana spp.).
  • New South Wales: Class 3 – a regionally controlled weed. The relevant local control authority must be promptly notified of the presence of this weed and it must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed (in the Bega Valley, Eurobodalla and Lord Howe Island local authority areas). Class 4 – a locally controlled weed. The growth and spread of this species must be controlled according to the measures specified in a management plan published by the local control authority and the plant may not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed (in a large number of local authority areas). Class 5 – a restricted weed which must not be sold, bought or knowingly distributed (throughout the entire state). See the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries Noxious Weeds List at for more detailed information on which local areas are covered in these declarations. This declaration applies to all lantana species (Lantana spp.).
  • Northern Territory: B – growth and spread of this species to be controlled (in areas outside of towns), and C – not to be introduced into the Territory.
  • Western Australia: Prohibited – on the prohibited species list and not permitted entry into the state.


For information on the management of this species see the following resources:

  • the Biosecurity Queensland Fact Sheet on this species, which is available online at
  • the Northern Territory Department of Natural Resources, Environment and The Arts Agnote on this species, which is available online at

Similar Species

Creeping lantana (Lantana montevidensis) is relatively similar to lantana (Lantana camara). However, lantana (Lantana camara) it a much taller plant with a more upright (i.e. erect) growth habit and usually has prickles or thorns along its stems.

Fact sheets are available from Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) service centres and our Customer Service Centre (telephone 13 25 23). Check our website at to ensure you have the latest version of this fact sheet. The control methods referred to in this fact sheet should be used in accordance with the restrictions (federal and state legislation, and local government laws) directly or indirectly related to each control method. These restrictions may prevent the use of one or more of the methods referred to, depending on individual circumstances. While every care is taken to ensure the accuracy of this information, DEEDI does not invite reliance upon it, nor accept responsibility for any loss or damage caused by actions based on it.

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