Ask a Question forum: Flowering perennial groundcover

Page 1 of 2 • 1 2
Views: 1039, Replies: 25 » Jump to the end
Name: Guybo
Blenheim, Ontario (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Canadian Farmer Hybridizer Hostas Hummingbirder
Butterflies Seller of Garden Stuff Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Guybo
Apr 28, 2014 4:25 AM CST
We are looking for a perennial groundcover (hopefully not terribly invasive) that has an extended blooming period - all summer!?!
We are in Zone 5/6 any suggestions? Thanks
May the blooms be with you!

Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
Image
SongofJoy
Apr 28, 2014 6:19 AM CST
I like Woolly Thyme (Thymus praecox) for one, as long as the site is sunny and well-drained.
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: cheshirekat
New Mexico, USA Zone 8 (Zone 8a)
Herbs Dog Lover Bee Lover Vegetable Grower Garden Procrastinator
Image
ckatNM
Apr 28, 2014 11:30 AM CST
I think that plants that have a tendency to be invasive make the best ground covers. Unless you plan to purchase a lot of plants, or seeds and have to wait and wait and wait for them to fill in the areas you have chosen, slow growers might not be ideal.

Do you need the ground cover for a full sun, dappled sun, or partial shade spot? Are you looking for something drought tolerant? Will you be walking on the ground cover? Do you have specific flower colors in mind? How high do you want the flowers and plants to grow? There are a lot of plants that work well as ground cover in a variety of soils like stonecrop, periwinkle, strawberries can be used as ground cover, clover, thyme, chamomile, etc. I personally like the edible ones the best, but you can also mix and match so you can even have blooms of one color early in the season and another color for the end of the season.

In my experience, you do not want to get the stonecrop if they will be planted in areas you want free of bees. Of all the plants I have grown, stonecrop brought the most bees to my garden. This was a huge problem for me because I was extremely fearful of bees, but wanted to take photos of the stonecrop flowers. Waiting for the bees to leave my garden in peace was futile. Surefire way for me to get over my fear of bees. I've taken hundreds of photos of them without getting stung. The bees were too busy getting all the nectar to be bothered with my presence since I did not attempt to swat them away. Now, I am only occasionally afraid of bees. Best and cheapest therapy ever!

Not sure how to post one of the stonecrop photos I added to the plant database, but may as well try now.

"A garden is a friend you can visit any time." - Anonymous
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Master Level Dog Lover Cottage Gardener
Native Plants and Wildflowers Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Keeps Horses Hummingbirder Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
Image
chelle
Apr 28, 2014 12:19 PM CST
You might research Speedwell (Veronica 'Whitewater'). I'm unsure if it's a sterile hybrid, but I like the way it's behaved so far. It's just entering its second season here, however, so it's a bit early yet for any definitive conclusions. I do like the fact that it's one of the earliest groundcovers here to spring back into action -just as soon as the snow is gone.



More info would definitely help:

Height
Use
Full sun/part-sun/bright shade/shade
Windy/protected
Dry/moist/wet
Semi-evergreen or deciduous

Will watering during dry spells be difficult?

Anything that you can add will help to narrow down the options. Smiling
Cottage Gardening

Newest Interest: Rock Gardens


Name: Guybo
Blenheim, Ontario (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Canadian Farmer Hybridizer Hostas Hummingbirder
Butterflies Seller of Garden Stuff Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Guybo
Apr 28, 2014 12:35 PM CST
We would like the height to be under 6 inches. Watering is not a problem. It is part shade, and generally protected. Soil conditions because of the light shade, and slight clay composition would not be "well drained". Being zone 5b, we don't care if it is deciduous or evergreen. It will probably get walked on from time to time, but if the plant can not handle that, I can put down a penny paver walkway.

We are only looking to cover an area about 40 - 50 sq feet next to a Koi pond. There are always frogs around, so bugs and slugs shouldn't be a problem.
Ideal bloom would be all summer, and multiple colors (don't ask for much do I !!)
May the blooms be with you!

Name: cheshirekat
New Mexico, USA Zone 8 (Zone 8a)
Herbs Dog Lover Bee Lover Vegetable Grower Garden Procrastinator
Image
ckatNM
Apr 28, 2014 12:48 PM CST
Speedwell, as chelle mentioned is a good choice. And you can use some for tea. I've only grown them in pots.

For large areas, you would probably love to have a mix of colors and textures. At least I would. Can't wait to see pictures of what you decide. I only wish I could a have a koi pond. I really really wish I had some frogs to make my garden fun among them as companions. But my dog would probably try to eat them.
"A garden is a friend you can visit any time." - Anonymous
Name: Guybo
Blenheim, Ontario (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Canadian Farmer Hybridizer Hostas Hummingbirder
Butterflies Seller of Garden Stuff Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Guybo
Apr 28, 2014 12:57 PM CST
Have you tried toads? We have a mix of frogs and toads. Our dog grabbed a toad once and the toad did it's natural defense thing - urinated !! The dog never went near a frog or toad again! Regarding the Koi, we lost them all last fall to some wild mink. So now we simply use feeder goldfish. If they survive the winter they grow a lot bigger the next year.
May the blooms be with you!

Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Master Level Dog Lover Cottage Gardener
Native Plants and Wildflowers Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Keeps Horses Hummingbirder Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
Image
chelle
Apr 28, 2014 1:54 PM CST
Thanks for the extra information, Guybo.


Another one that's new in my garden but reportedly blooms most of the summer is Strawberry Fragaria x ananassa 'Pink Panda'.



...back after I get my jolting and jigging computer straightened out. Rolling my eyes.
Cottage Gardening

Newest Interest: Rock Gardens


Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
Image
SongofJoy
Apr 28, 2014 3:00 PM CST
And do keep in mind little feet (if that is applicable) and bees on blooms.
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Master Level Dog Lover Cottage Gardener
Native Plants and Wildflowers Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Keeps Horses Hummingbirder Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
Image
chelle
Apr 28, 2014 3:02 PM CST
While not generally considered a groundcover plant, some of the shorter dianthus might be an option. Percentage of return might be lower than other choices, however; my Velvet-N-Lace are showing return of about fifty percent so far.

There's debate aplenty about campanula's possible invasive tendencies, but a great many are shorter and they do tend to have a long bloom season.

There's a great selection of miniature hosta available now, too, and they always look so nice next to a water feature.

All of these would require a path, I guess, but they still might work for you.

@4susiesjoy
@pirl
@mcash70
@CarolineScott
@JuneOntario

Any advice to share here?
Cottage Gardening

Newest Interest: Rock Gardens


Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Apr 28, 2014 5:50 PM CST
I like the thyme and any non-invasive plants. I don't know if you have enough sun for the tiny creeping sedums to grow well but they're so nice when they mingle together and they can take light foot traffic.
Thumb of 2014-04-28/pirl/9d5f68
Thumb of 2014-04-28/pirl/497b36

Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian Bulbs Winter Sowing Enjoys or suffers cold winters Lilies
Peonies Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Image
CarolineScott
Apr 28, 2014 6:57 PM CST
Perennial vinca, but might be more invasive there?
Some of the perennial geraniums (cranesbills).
Name: Guybo
Blenheim, Ontario (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Region: Canadian Farmer Hybridizer Hostas Hummingbirder
Butterflies Seller of Garden Stuff Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Guybo
Apr 29, 2014 4:07 AM CST
Thanks all - you've given us a number of suggestions so we can start doing some research now and decide which way (s) to go.

Cheers
May the blooms be with you!

Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Apr 29, 2014 8:24 AM CST
I like the perennial cranesbills too. Stay low, several different colors, and bloom well in part shade. Also very hardy and have such pretty foliage. We use them in my daughter's garden in Utah, also in clay soil.

As someone also mentioned above, the best ground covers are always going to be somewhat invasive. Otherwise they just don't cover!
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Susie
Leonard, Minnesota (Zone 3b)
Composter Hellebores Garden Art Irises Xeriscape Echinacea
Sedums Foliage Fan Herbs Dahlias Frogs and Toads Bee Lover
Image
4susiesjoy
Apr 29, 2014 11:12 AM CST
Lamium is invasive but has really pretty foliage, blooms for a long time, has several varieties with different color leaves and flowers. It can stand some sun but is better in the shade. Just an idea. Smiling
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
Cottage Gardener Houseplants Spiders! Heucheras Frogs and Toads Dahlias
Hummingbirder Sedums Winter Sowing Peonies Region: Michigan Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
jvdubb
Apr 29, 2014 12:21 PM CST
Lamium has never been invasive for me, but I have heard that from many people
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Apr 29, 2014 3:11 PM CST
It's horribly invasive here.
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Master Level Dog Lover Cottage Gardener
Native Plants and Wildflowers Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Keeps Horses Hummingbirder Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
Image
chelle
Apr 29, 2014 4:04 PM CST
Wild types show up here every year, but I like them. Early food for the bees. Ours here are really easy to pull, if need be. Smiling
Cottage Gardening

Newest Interest: Rock Gardens


Name: Rob Duval
Mason, New Hampshire (Zone 5b)
Region: New Hampshire Vegetable Grower Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tomato Heads
Annuals Hostas Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Spiders! Dog Lover Region: Northeast US
Image
robertduval14
Apr 29, 2014 5:44 PM CST

Plants Admin

I like Ajuga's for groundcover. Pretty blooms and great colored foliage that often changes shade with the seasons.
Name: Cindi
Wichita, Kansas (Zone 7a)
Charter ATP Member Plant and/or Seed Trader Permaculture Roses Ponds Peonies
Lilies Irises Daylilies Dog Lover Beekeeper Garden Ideas: Master Level
Image
CindiKS
Apr 30, 2014 1:51 PM CST
I agree with Rob. Ajugas make a great groundcover in sun or shade.
Mazus and Anacyclus are other options.
Remember that children, marriages, and flower gardens reflect the kind of care they get.
H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Page 1 of 2 • 1 2

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Ask a Question forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Today's site banner is by Paul2032 and is called "French Marigold"