The Q&A Archives: Ground Covers

Question: I'm looking for a low maitenence fast growing ground cover to replace my so called lawn. It's a full sun area with sandy soil. I'm willing to bring in some dirt if necessary. Any suggestions?

Answer: Here are a few suggestions:
Pachysandra; Dense evergreen that spreads by underground runners. Effectively crowds out many weeds. The native P. procumbens has marbled leaves and fragrant flowers.

Willowleaf Cotoneaster (Cotoneaster salicifolia); Lustrous, wide-spreading, evergreen with white flowers and small red fruit. Groundcover varieties include 'Repens' and 'Emerald Carpet'.

Periwinkle (Vinca minor); Trailing evergreen with dark green foliage and purple, blue or white flowers in April. V. major is more aggressive with larger leaves and flowers. It will mound up to 2 feet.

Caroline Jessamine (Gelsemium sempervirens); Evergreen, may turn bronze in winter in colder areas. Golden yellow flowers in spring.

Carpet Bugle (Ajuga reptans); Green, purple or variegated evergreen leaves. Blue flowers on spikes in spring. Spreads quickly.

Creeping Phlox (Phlox subulata); Tiny needlelike, evergreen foliage is covered by pink, rose, lavender or white flowers in early spring.

Lantana; Rapid-growing with a long bloom season. Flowers are often multi-colored, yellow, red and orange. Pink, lavender and white are also available. All attract butterflies.

Hope one of these suggestions is just right for your landscape.

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