Being a stone kinda guy, I spent a few happy hours the other day rescuing a rock garden just outside our shaded side door that had been buried in time, dirt, neglect and a crawly, yellow-green, ground cover that masquerades as useful. (Not a great photo of rocks here but the stones buddied up nicely and so grateful to be back above ground.)

So, the next day I am wandering a local Meijer’s garden section – hey it’s garden time and not all plant greatness comes by UPS from fashionable, high-priced East Coast nursery establishments – and sitting before me is a tray of stunning, electric- blue, take-me-home-now Lithodora.

The name is lure enough—Lithodora. I have vague memories of trying it before. Say it slowly, softly…lith…o..dora…and game over. The bright blue color seals the deal.

So, home it comes, and where to plant it? Lithodora is very needy. It requires rich, soft, slightly acid, well-drained soil in mostly shade to prosper. Humidity can be an issue. It’s one of those eye-candy, take-a-chance plants either prospering or dearly departed.

Happily, beyond coincidentally, those exact needy attributes came with that rock garden I had just resurrected outside our side door.

In went the Lithodora, carefully planted, anxious to see it prosper in that busy location.

Would its needy self-work there?

The answer soon arrived. Bright. Blue. Color. At least for now.

Only then did I look up the Lithodora name derivation. The “litho” comes from the Greek “lythos” for stone. The “dora” from the Greek word “dorea” for “gift.”

Stone. Gift.

Rock. Garden.


Had no idea.

And all of that partnered up a few thousand years later just outside our side door. Socrates, Plato and Aristotle are in the building.