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Vinca Care

April 14, 2022


Trailing or Upright

Vincas are a versatile annual to add to your garden. Depending on the variety it can be either trailing or upright. The trailing vincas are a great option as a spiller out of a container or hanging basket. The upright vincas make fabulous fillers in containers or garden beds, providing a mass of flowers as a backdrop to the headlining thriller plants.

Our Favorite Varieties

  • Cora: disease-resistant trailing vinca with large flowers and glossy deep green leaves. Height: 14-16″, Spread: 18-25″
  • Mediterranean: trailing vinca that offers a true red. Terrific coverage and luxnca with large overlapping petals. This early flowering vinca is fabulous as a filler. Height: 10-14″, spread: 4-6
  • Tattoo: upright vinca with nickel-sized flowers with an airbrushed look. Height: 10-14″, Spread: 6-8″
  • Titan: perfect vinca for landscapes and containers of all types. It has star-shaped flowers with glossy leaves. Height: 14-16″, Spread: 10-12″

Keep Them Warm

Vinca prefers warm (even hot) weather over chilly nights. Frost can cause them to wilt or die. This is one to keep inside until the frost-free date. Temperatures below 64˚F can stunt plant growth and cause leaves to turn yellow. Vincas loves full sun. It will tolerate part shade but may become leggy if there is too much shade.

Annual vinca is best grown in sandy loam soil in a full sun location. Although tolerant of drought, it will perform best with a weekly water soak rather than sprayed from overhead. Vincas are free-flowering and self-cleaning, and no deadheading is necessary.



Vincas are great for raised beds, window boxes or containers. Use a well-draining potting soil. Be sure that the container has drainage holes, as wet soil can cause root rot.

Space the plants far enough apart to allow for 8-12 inches of space at maturity. Place the container in an area that can get full sun to partial shade. Apply a liquid fertilizer twice a month, watering well after each application.


Compost & Fertilization

When planting in beds, mix a 1-inch layer of compost into the top 6 inches of soil before planting.

Vinca is not picky about fertilizers as long as they are balanced. Use a 10-10-10  nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium fertilizer. It can be either water-soluble or granular. Using Miracle Grow can be another option. This can quickly green up the plant and encourage better blooming. Be sure to follow the packaging instructions on all types of fertilizers. Overfertilizing can harm the plant. 

  • Vinca Fertilizing Tips:
  • Fertilize monthly for better blooming
  • Use a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer
  • Water well after each application
  • Avoid the foliage when applying the fertilizer

Disease Control Tips

Brown Spot on Leaves:

Annual, vinca can succumb to numerous fungal diseases, like leaf spot, botrytis blight, and even root rot. These kinds of problems happen because of dampness, and lack of airflow. This problem is easily fixed by thinning out the plants—trim away all affected leaves with a clean, sharp garden shear—and applying a fungicide.

Yellow, Wilted Leaves:
If your annual vinca’s leaves are yellowing and wilted, it’s likely your plant is getting too much water. Stick your finger into the soil: Is it soaked? Yellowing and wilted leaves are signs of too much moisture, which is easy to remedy.

Follow these tips: 

  • If you have a thick layer of mulch, remove it to let the soil dry out faster.
  • Increase drainage by aerating the soil: sink a steel bar or tomato stake a foot deep and pull it out. Repeat every 2 inches (5 cm) in all directions.
  • Remove infected plants. Best increase chances for other plants.
  • Get to know the “water needed wilt“, and only water when you notice it: leaves sag down somewhat.