Does anyone know about ground covers
Fairly new to BC and to Nanaimo, and I have been researching what type of ground covers would be best. We have a large hill in the front yard that needs some major aesthetic work. I need to find an economical way to make this area look better.
One idea I had was to plant a fast growing, deer resistant ground cover that can be drought tolerant (southern exposure). But I really would appreciate suggestions.
Wish I had some advice. I hope someone has an answer!
I did find this page:
I'd suggest periwinkle. Seems to be deer resistant, certainly was on a large slope where I used it, when the deer were chomping everything else. Pretty blue blooms. A big advantage is that no weeds or wild grass seem to grow inside the planting, which is just plain ugly, and you'd have to walk through the periwinkle to pull them. Some people have used St. John"s Wort, which is a bit higher, has a yellow bloom, but I notice that taller wild grasses will grow inside it, which is ugly, and you have no option but to stomp down the St. John's Wort to pull out the wild grass, etc. And I think the green of the periwinkle leaves is a more attractive green than the St. John's Wort. Never had to water my periwinkle either, even 'tho it had full sun all day and was hot, because it ran down to the beach, so there was reflected light off the ocean going on, too.
Thanks for the tips. Perwinkle does sound like it may be the way to go. Certainly a beautiful plant. Plus I really like the idea that it grows thick and blocks out the grasses. Now just to find lots! Thanks again
Why is the ground cover?
Gardeners often seek cover as moneywort plants, ivy, clover, under the vinca, hostas and screws when they have difficult areas of the garden with the landscape. Cover crops are chosen for their strength, the tendency to spread, and tolerance for a variety of conditions.
These plants grow where others can not. But once they are established, which offer another benefit that makes them useful as a kind of live coverage, but local outcompete weeds, avoiding coming. It may be that a ground cover plant is perfect as a border planting or living mulch to keep weeds from your garden or ornamental beds.
How low cover work?
The same properties that make these plants make good ground covers major competitors to weeds. After all, weeds can not reach where a plant is established and thriving, and ground covers are a carpet of plant life that discourages them.
From ground covers rarely need the sun and water as much as the plants are present, the loss of roots of the water slowly. It prevents soil erosion, especially useful on sloping ground. The live coverage will also insulate the soil from temperature extremes and help build organic matter levels in soil.
What kind of ground cover to use?
Choose a ground cover that is appropriate for the location you want to plant in. For shady areas, try golden saxifrage, hosta, vinca minor, Oregon grape, or pulmonary.
If you want the green year, use an evergreen such as cranberry, bearberry, rosemary or bell. Adjust the height of ground cover to plant that acts as fertilizer for the highest shrub-like ground covers will do well under trees, while vines are best for protecting the soil with flowers.
To add a useful herb for your garden, any of the screws are soil resistant coatings, such as chamomile.
Ground maintenance cover
Plant in spring, and remember that prevention aspects of weed ground cover does not start immediately. You have to plant in a Weedless, and eliminate anyone who appears, while the plant is being established.
Add some compost and water to cover the soil in the spring as you would any other plant, and water, along with its other plants. However, keep an eye on whether the canopy spread. If you have a lot of sun and water, which can become invasive and spread beyond its original location.
Cut back their main plants, and cut down where unwanted yard.
I worked as a landscape maintenance gardener here in Nanaimo for many yrs and have pulled weeds from every type of groundcover you can imagine. I HATE to say it but the best ground cover for quick growth and the ability to choke out weeds is ivy. I Know, I know the island is being buried in Ivy but.......
I agree with periwinkle, it is hardy, likes shade and sun and it can withstand droughts. I love the dark shiny green leaves.
If you are super lazy and want something that is no trouble except you can not get rid of it once it is established, try goutweed. It really needs to be in a spot that it can not invade other places. Weedy does not even begin to describe goutweed. I had an area that was dry and shady, enclosed by a gravel walkway and a cement pad. It looked great and needed no maintenance. I can't even imagine how you would get it out of there if you needed to.
Okay, stick with the periwinkle.
Unfortunately periwinkle (vinca) doesn't do well in the situation you describe, southern, dry exposure....it prefers shade to semi-sun and moist soil. Goutweed would be a good choice if you're looking for a deciduous cover but it does die back in the winter and reappears in the spring.
Be careful about introducing invasive species.
I have tried ivy and periwinkle and have regretted it. It doesn't take long before they are choking out other plants and trees and it is a lot of work to remove them. I have had very good success with planting easy care plants that are drought-tolerant and deer-resistant. Good choices for a sunny slope are decorative grasses, shasta daisies and california poppies. I wasn't sure about the decorative grasses at first, but now I love them.
If this is avey exposed area the ivy might not like the sun and heat. A plant called "Hens and chicks" might work but takes quite a while to get established...