The Q&A Archives: Liriope is in decline-need substitute

Question: Our Evergreen Giant Liriope grew on the upper edge of a retaining wall and was beautiful for many years, until the shade tree had to be severely cut back. Now it looks horrible. A landscaper also planted the same liriope on a sloped raised bed. It's been 2 years, and they now look awful - all the ends are grey and dried out. What they now have in common is that they both get a lot of Zone 9A sun. Can you think of a substitute, especially for above the retaining wall? They formed such a nice edge and were relatively maintenance free.

Answer: Bettina,

Liriope can get rather ragged looking. You can mow it back to a few inches high and it will return with fresh new growth. However if the plants are getting too much sun the new growth will only get burned looking again.

There is not a substitute that looks like liriope for bright sun areas. However you may find a dwarf yaupon shrub to be a good choice or perhaps a short statured clumping grass like Gulf Muhly.

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