Allegheny or Mountain Spurge is a short, shrubby ground cover which barely reaches a foot tall. Grown in dappled sun to full shade, it spreads by rhizomes to form a carpet of semi-toothed, crisp blue-green leaves with silvery and purple mottling developing over the growing season. The leaves of Allegheny Spurge are typically deciduous above zone 6, but can be semi-evergreen to evergreen the further south one goes within its range, in the deep south. Small, fragrant, pinkish white flowers bloom in the spring before the leaves have emerged, along terminal spikes that are a few inches long. It prefers consistently moist soil, but shows some drought tolerance when established. Allegheny Spurge is one of the best groundcovers for shade, considered more attractive than the over-used, Asiatic Pachysandra terminalis. The native species grows slowly, can be grown with other perennials and/or shrubs and will not take over like P. terminalis. This species is considered vulnerable in all of its native range. It is reported mostly in Kentucky and Tennessee (in only one county in NC) and seems to favor soils with a calcareous base. This rare and interesting perennial should play a role in any shady southern garden.