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Flowers in three different colors!

Phlox Perfectly Puzzling

It is pink, white or lavender? We don't know how to answer because each plant has flowers in all three colors. How cool is that?

Phlox ‘Perfectly Puzzling’ is so named because it is puzzling that it produces flowers in three different colors: white, light raspberry-violet, or medium-dark raspberry-violet. The different flower colors are randomly produced on any given plant, and it is attractive in all color forms. ‘Perfectly Puzzling’ is a well-behaved and durable moss phlox selection that blooms for four weeks. At peak bloom, the blooms cover the plants completely. The petite 0.6-inch-wide flowers are star-shaped with narrow petals and cleft petal tips. Like many moss phlox, ‘Perfectly Puzzling’ forms a low-spreading mound that strongly layers in as it spreads. The plants eventually grew together to form a continuous ground cover. The diminutive, starry flowers are attractive in any of the three colors that may appear. The unpredictable pattern of the flower colors adds to its charm.

Enjoy its early spring bloom, and well-behaved, needle-like summer foliage. Expect a full month of floral display. Use this multi-hued selection in full sun toward the front of the perennial border, in the rock garden, on slopes, over stone walls, between pavers, and in similar sites. Mass it as a ground cover for a striking spring floral display.

Please note: We don't sell plants. Asking your local retailer or googling the plant name is the easiest way to find someone selling our plants.

Please note: Download hi-res photos from the photo gallery at the bottom of the page.

Who Am I?

  • Common Name

    Perfectly Puzzling phlox
  • Botanical Name

    Phlox 'Perfectly Puzzling' PP31487
  • Type

  • US Native?

  • Origin

    Open-pollinated seed was collected in 2009 from the diminutive, white-flowered selection Phlox ‘Ellie B.’, which is thought to be a hybrid between Phlox subulata and Phlox bifida. The pollen parent was likely a Phlox subulata selection, as many cultivars of moss phlox were growing nearby. ‘Perfectly Puzzling’ was selected as it bloomed in April of 2012. Careful study of individual flowers led us to observe that no one flower transitions through all three colors. Two rounds of vegetative propagation proved this selection is actually a chimera of sorts, as the three flower colors can appear in random patterns on the propagules. The medium raspberry color may dominate over time.

  • Bloom Time

  • Bloom Color

    Pink and white

Cultural Details

  • Bloom Time

  • Size

    4" tall by 18" wide
  • Hardiness Zone

  • Light

    Full sun
  • Soil

    Adaptable to average garden soils.
  • Moisture

    Moist to dry, but sharply drained, especially in winter. Drought tolerant once established.
  • Disease & Pests

    Unlike the summer-blooming phlox (Phlox maculata and Phlox paniculata), this and other moss phlox are not beset by powdery mildew or browsed by deer or rabbits.
  • Landscape Use

    Borders, mass plantings, rock gardens, hanging over a wall, slopes
  • Propagation

    Softwood Cuttings

Available Photos

Hover over images to download hi-res files.