Those spaces between patio pavers. The area where the driveway ends and the landscaping begins. That backyard corner where the ground is too gravelly for much to grow.
Spaces that are too inhospitable for grass are often the ideal place for simple ground-cover plants. These types of plants soften hard lines, embellish a landscape’s aesthetic and can even add a touch of lovely fragrance. Plus, the Homestead Gardens experts consider perennial ground cover plants an alternative to mulch. It’s a “green mulch” option with little to no weeding required!
Depending on your conditions and climate, you’ll want to wisely choose the right cover plants for your needs. When doing research, three simple rules can help ensure success:
Rule 1: Low height
Ground-cover plants should grow low: several inches or less. This eliminates tripping hazards plus ensures the plant doesn’t overwhelm other landscape features. After all, you don’t want your pavers to look like they’re sinking.
Rule 2: Thick
A good ground-cover plant will be thick and full, like a carpet for the outdoors. However, it shouldn’t be invasive. You don’t want it taking over other garden elements or require much maintenance.
Rule 3: Hardy
Ground-cover plants grow in some harsh places. They must be hardy to survive the elements and the occasional foot traffic. If you need guidance, ask a Homestead Gardens expert for advice. Two popular options are Stepables and Jeepers Creepers, both reputable growers that offer eye-catching, durable perennial plants.
For example, check out sedum coral carpet, which provides a beautiful blanket of rich reds and greens ideal for hot, dry sites. The clusters of rounded leaves are like little bunches of beads and are great complements to rock gardens, paver spaces and even living walls.
Veronica repens is another stunner to consider. This ground-hugger produces tiny white flowers in late spring that add elegance between flagstones or as cover in small spaces. It can even be a lawn substitute!
Sedum John Creech: Poor soil is no worry for this hardy plant. As long as you have good drainage, it should thrive in hot sunny sites. With vivid green clusters of leaves, this attractive plant rewards growers with mauve-colored starry flowers in summer.
Isotoma has delicate-looking white flowers in spring and summer, but make no mistake, this is one hardy ground-cover plant. It can survive down to -20 F, including some snow cover!
Visit a Homestead Gardens store and talk to one of our experts to find the right ground cover plant for your unique conditions and lifestyle needs!