The Q&A Archives: Ground cover

Question: Hi, I would like to know what kind of ground cover I need. I live in Texas and my backyard is complete shade. I can not get grass to grow and right now it's nothing but dirt. I want a ground cover that can be walked on. What suggestions do you have? Thanks!

Answer: One of the more common plants we use in the shade is Monkey Grass. The standard type of Monkey Grass gradually spreads. There's a dwarf type that really works well, stays extremely low and can take foot traffic. You can even mow it once a year to keep it fresh. It's an excellent choice for the shade.

Another common plant is liriope. Liriope comes in a standard green form, and there are some variegated forms of liriope as well. There's also a relative of liriope and Monkey Grass called Aztec Grass. It has white and green striped leaves that really brightens up the shade.

Another choice for shady areas are the sedges. We have several native sedges for Texas that do well in the shade. Texas Sedge is an attractive one. It grows in small clumps; if you plant them close enough together, it can form a nice cover and it does reseed. Another good sedge is Berkeley Sedge. It gets a little taller and forms a more robust clump in the garden.

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

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