Less invasive and works in part shade
It sure is invasive in my yard!!!
Kay, I'm always interested in knowing more when I read that someone has an invasive plant. I don't have any ruellia (Mexican Petunia) but lots of my neighbors do. Did you plant it but now you regret it? Or did it come in from a neighbor? Or was it there when you bought your home? Are you still trying to get rid of it? Or are you trying to live with it but keep it tame? I wonder if it was invasive right from the start and have you been trying to eradicate it ever since?
my original was gift froma neighbor in 91. have been redoing my garden plan and so far have dug up 275 plants !!. You learn to love it?? lol
Interesting that both of the white forms croak ??
have never grown the pink gary
Mine went in the ground 15 years ago from 6" pots. I'm still trying to eradicate it. Very invasive plant. I would never recommend this for anyone's garden.
I have a lawn guy that weed whacks everything to death, I don't have anything that is invasive. This plant so far has behaved, out of fear of the lawn guy, probably! The purple flowered one went absolutely wild at my old house, and I definitely can see it being a pest.
It was at my house when I moved here. It IS beautiful, but I am constantly pulling it. It spreads from underground runners and seeds, so there's no way to win with this plant - you just live with it.
My experience is that the tall purple form is the most prolific & annoying - I have the tall pink form & it does seem very well-behaved in comparison. I have started it from seed myself, in starter pots, but it never seems to self seed in the yard.
There are two houses in my neighborhood that have ruellia planted in different ways (actually, there are more than two, but these two bear mentioning). One house, just down the street from me has both the pink and purple types. He's an older gentleman, probably in his 90's. He has an assisted living nurse that comes out to check on him on a daily basis and she helps him with his garden. His ruellia was simply planted in a shaded corner bed with no containment to speak of and, despite the work of him and the nurse, the plants, both varieties, are starting to take over quite a bit of his yard.
A couple streets over is the other house with ruellia, the purple variety. This lady has it planted inside a raised garden built of landscaping blocks around her street light that sits in full sun. While the area inside this raised garden is becoming choked with ruellia, it does not appear that the plants have spread outside of the raised area. However, she also keeps her grass mowed super short, maybe 1", 2" at most. So it's possible that the plants have escaped containment, but are being kept in check by the low mower height.
Besides containment, there is another difference between their yards and it makes sense from what I've read on UF's website. The older gentleman has an irrigation system set up, but it is improperly calibrated. This system probably runs 6-8 hours a day despite rainfall, with certain areas, his rose bushes and the ruellia beds, getting more water than others. The lady's raised and contained bed only gets what water the rain brings and sometimes water from a sprinkler when she thinks about it... which is not often.
So, I guess the point is, I think with proper care and consideration, it might be possible to somewhat contain Ruellia from spreading too much. It will indeed spread, because it is in it's nature to do so, but I think it could be manageable. But if planted in a moist area without any kind of containment, it could be more work than it is worth to control it. The spreading I have witnessed seems to be more in its ability to run than spreading via seed as I have not seen it growing in any random spots in the neighborhood.
I have found the tall pink to be more easily controlled as well. The purple is a nightmare! There is supposed to be a purple that does not come up from seeds, but it still spreads like wildfire from the roots.