Growing Crown Vetch Plants In Your Yard
Crown vetch plants are perennial, herbaceous plants that can spread rapidly by seed and by its multi-branched, creeping rhizomes. Planting crown vetch plants can be done by seed or potted plants. If you have a large area to cover, it is best to use seed. Crown vetch is not particular about soil type and will tolerate low pH and low fertility. However, you can prepare the soil by adding lime and organic compost. Leave rocks and hunks of dirt for a somewhat uneven planting bed. While it prefers full sun, it will tolerate some spotty shade. Young plants also do best when covered with a shallow layer of mulch. Once planted, the care of crown vetch requires very little maintenance, if any. Water new plants regularly and mow established plants to the ground in early fall. Cover with a 2-inch layer of mulch for winter protection.
Fall or spring is the best time to plant crown vetch in frost-prone areas of its hardiness zones. In mild, frost-free areas, it can be planted in fall through winter and early spring. Crown vetch is planted in two ways, either by seeds sown directly in soil or by crown or root divisions taken from a mature plant and placed in soil. Start with a spacing of 2 feet between plants to create a dense ground cover. Once established, crown vetch can spread aggressively, choking out other plants in the area.