Groundcovers

Why Groundcovers?

At Natureworks, we are embracing a new movement in landscape design:

MORE PLANTS LESS MULCH

This movement is inspired by the following books :

Planting in a Post Wild World by Claudia West and Thomas Rainer

The Know Maintenance Garden by Roy Diblik

Garden Revolution by Larry Weaner and Tom Christopher

Planting: A New Perspective by Piet Oudolf and Noel Kingsbury

This design style is based on the concept of DESIGNED PLANT COMMUNITIES.

  • Cover the ground densely with layers of plants. Bare ground invites weeds
  • Layer plants side by side and up and down.
  • Learn the ways that plants spread to understand how to use them in a designed plant community.
  • Upright plants leave space below for weeds. Plant groundcovering perennials at their base instead of mulching.
  • Try not to disturb the ground by tilling, turning it over, hoeing. Disturbance awakens the seed bank in the soil and you will get lots of weeds.
  • Large masses of organic mulch between plants breaks down and creates a fertile seed bed.
  • Allow plants to intermingle. The goal is a dense cover of plants that are compatible together.

The benefits:

  1. Maintenance is reduced as the ground cover layer fills in.
  2. You save money and time on spreading mulch and then having to weed year after year.
  3. Your landscape is much more diverse, with additional color and texture.
  4. You provide a much richer habitat for native pollinators, beneficial insects, and all of the other creatures that inhabit your yard.

Not all ground covers are low growing. If a perennial covers the ground and prevents weeds from encroaching, you should consider trying it. You can grow even taller, clump forming plants with it, or use it under shrubs or taller ornamental grasses.

Download a list of ground covers (PDF)