The Q&A Archives: Ground Cover

Question: Could you please reccomend a type of plant that will grow rapidly for ground cover. The problem I have is that on my property I have a slope that is to steep for mowing. This area is about 150 feet long by six feet high and becomes covered with weeds during the course of the growing seasons. The soil is very fine and rocky. I am looking for something that will take over this hillside rapidly that will need very little maintaining and is appealing to the eye.


Answer: Some really rugged groundcovers include Ajuga (Carpet bugle), Hedra (ivy), Cotoneaster (pyracantha), and Vinca minor (periwinkle). Ajuga has deep green leaves with deep blue highlights. In the spring it sends out spikes of bright blue flowers. The flowers fade, the spikes collapse and no deadheading is necessary; Ivy doesn't flower (to any significant degree) and can become invasive, but it is fast growing; cotoneaster produces small white flowers and clusters of red-orange berries in the fall (birds love the berries); vinca produces blue or white flowers from spring through summer and does not require deadheading. Any of these will work well for the site you describe. Best wishes with your landscape!

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