Ground Cover For Parking Strip - Knowledgebase Question

Portland, OR
Question by schilmo
October 15, 1999
I would like some suggestions for planting in a parking strip. It is full sun, poor clayish soil and hard to water. I would like a combination of easy care groundcovers that will look well together and do well under harsh conditions. I would like something that remains attractive through the winter, is low (may occasionally be walked on by people getting out of their cars), and does not clash with my pink dogwood during its spring blooming time. Some kind of bloom or berry, or seasonal interest would also be a plus. Any ideas?

Answer from NGA
October 15, 1999


Sounds like a difficult situation, but here are a few suggestions: Arctostaphylos (Kinnikinnick) is a native plant tolerant of the conditions you describe. Other suggestions include fragaria (wild strawberry), Wooly Thyme, or prostrate Cotoneaster. There's even an ornamental strawberry called 'Pink Panda' that would thrive in your parking strip. All new plants will require regular water until they're established, especially during the summer months. After that, they should be just fine with natural rainfall, and none of those listed above will suffer too greatly from occasional foot traffic.

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