Is there a plant, be it weed, herb, bush that stays green grows fast and
forms a fairly low dense groundcover? Like I said I don't really care if
it's a weed, just so long as it stays green. My large yard has tons of
locations that are magnets for weeds (red deadnettle this year for some
reason) and I would prefer to cover them with groundcover rather than let
them get overgrown with noxious weeds. Personally I would prefer herbs, and
I have thought about mint or chives, but I don't think they'll grow well in
this particular soil - partial shade, clay soil, Seattle is the area.
Do you get snow in Seattle? I have a small succulent with a tiny red flower
that I grow under pine trees and in another hard tough area and it crowds
out weeds and stays green all year round and has done right through 6 years
of drought with no additional watering. It grow fast, rips out fast if it
goes where I don't want it, has never been fed or watered and it survives
very heavy frosts down to -9 degrees C, but as we don't get snow, I don't
know if it'd survive if you got snow. The only catch is that I don't know
what it's called and would have to stick a pic of it somewhere for others to
I live in Seattle. There are so many really good year 'round ground covers
that will work for you it's hard to know where to start. For goodness sakes
don't use mint! It will over take everything and you'll have a worse
situation than you do now with the weeds. Chives are not really a ground
cover and depending on what part of Seattle you are in and what kind of
winter we have they won't always be green. There's practically a whole
different zone range depending on whether you are down close to the Sound or
on the far east side but most of the groundcovers you'd want will do well in
the whole area.
Thyme makes a good ground cover and thrives around here. Native
kinnickaknick does well as does lambs ears, although it's silvery mine
doesn't die back in the winter. One of the sections of The Bellevue
Botanical Gardens is a Groundcover Garden. You could go take a walk through
that and jot down the names of whatever strikes your fancy. Everything is
labeled and you can even get a map of the garden with a plant list.
Why don't you drop into a good nursery, the Seattle area has lot of them,
and look at what they have in their ground cover sections, talk to the
people about what you want. You'll most likely have to go there anyway to
get what you want. Gardening season is really gearing up now so if you could
possibly go on a weekday they won't be so busy and will have plenty of time
If you want any more info about the Seattle gardening scene, where to go,
who to talk to, email me at 'Valkyriemi at yahoo dot com' . Put
"rec.gardens" in the subject line so I don't toss you into the spam pile.
Thank you for the replies, and thank everyone else for the replies as well.
I noticed a lot of references to thyme and oregano - and while I would
greatly prefer that type of plant it just doesn't propagate quickly enough
for my tastes, plus dandilions seem to eat them for lunch.
I do mosey over to Squak Mt. nursery on occasion, but they are somewhat
lacking in the troubleshooting department. I'll take a look at the Bellevue
botanical gardens, I used to live right next to them actually, but thought
they were for official city business only.
For Billy, I'll take a closer look at sweet woodruff - sounds like it would
be better suited for the areas I'm interested in, under the big Doug Fir,
around the aging crippled dogwood where Beggar's Lice and Red Deadnettle
have taken over.
I planted 1 plug of sweet woodruff about 30 years ago. Now it covers
about 200 square feet. But it is not a continuous sweet woodruff
carpet. Seems it like to mosey about. I never made new plugs just let
the one move on its own. If I had plugged it about it would be more
wide spread. Check about with the neighbors perhaps they have it.
I got mine from
We use it to make may wine.
Funny this year the woodruff is flowering nicely but local strawberries
seem real late.
Since you are near Squak Mt here's a couple of nurseries that I would
recommend to you. Good customer service, good inventory, and very
knowledgeable, friendly staff. I'm sure they can recommend a whole list of
groundcover plants we didn't even think to mention.
Classic Nursery &
12526 Avondale Road NE
12504 Issaquah-Hobart Rd SE
Classic Nursery has a whole section of plants just for native plant
Hayes Nursery has a 'frequent buyer' program.
Until your ground cover gets established you're going to have to really keep
on top of the weeds. Unfortunately that's just the nature of gardening,
don't know how you can avoid it. If there's a secret solution revealed to
you be sure to let us all know!
Maybe I should put a whole plantation down, grow ethanol for my truck? I'm
serious I never saw deadnettle ANYWHERE before this year. It just poof,
popped out of the ground in March and has now spread across the land like a
maroon plague. It's not the most hideous weed in the world, at least it has
that going for it.
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