The Q&A Archives: Ground Covers for a Steep Slope

Question: My lot rises about 10' from the road. From a point 5' to the top of my lot there is a slope appx. 5' long by 90' wide at a 45 degree angle. Water doesn't seem to seep in this area, it just runs off. Most of the area is shaded by 2 large trees from mid-morning till night. One portion of the area is in full sun all day. I would like to fill this area with some type of ground cover or planting that will help keep the weeds and grass down. It is very hard to work on the slope and I can't use any type of mulch - it rolls off. What would you do with this area?

Answer: Sounds like you have a landscaping nightmare! Some really rugged groundcovers include Ajuga (Carpet bugle), Hedra (ivy), Cotoneaster (pyracantha), and Vinca minor (periwinkle). Do your neighbors have a similar landscape situation and, if so, have they found a successful plant? Another option is to build terraced garden beds, which resemble broad steps up the slope. It's more work to install, but you'll expand the range of plants you can work with. Enjoy!

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