I have steep slopes (I planted grass, trees, rug juniper, azaleas,
lilies, iris, daffodils, ferns, Japanese spurge, monkey grass, sage,
wandering Jew, lavender, roses, and a variety of herbs.) The first
year I had to deal with ruts and plants being washed away during heavy
summer rain storms. But now everything is well-established. The
grass (tall fescue) does an excellent job in holding the hillside
soil. Plants near the top provide privacy. Flowering plants near the
bottom are visible from many angles. I still have a few "problem"
areas that are deeply shaded where English ivy is finally taking over.
To have the greatest chance of success. select plants that do well in
the area and conditions you wish to plant (native plants), rather than
plants you think look beautiful.
Which way does the slope face (compass direction)?
How high and steep is it? Can you work on it easily, or is it too
Can you see it from your house and yards, or does it slope down and
away? Can you see it from the street? Who will enjoy the
landscaping on the slope, yourself or your neighbors?
What is your climate? Will the slope be irrigated, or are rains
Is this a natural or manufactured (graded) slope? What kind of
soil is on it?
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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