Ground covers are an essential component of any garden, providing an attractive and functional way to cover the soil surface while adding colour and texture to the landscape. They are great for weed suppression, soil erosion control, and moisture retention. In Australia, where the climate is often hot and dry, the use of ground covers has become increasingly popular among gardeners and landscapers.
Best Weed Suppressing Ground Cover
Weeds are a common issue in gardens and landscaping, requiring considerable time and effort to control. Effective weed-suppressing ground covers can be a game-changer in reducing the amount of time spent on weed control. Examples of popular species used for ground cover include:
1. Creeping Boobialla
Creeping Boobialla (Myoporum parvifolium) is a hardy evergreen ground cover that is perfect for weed suppression. It has small, leathery green leaves that form a dense mat, and during spring and summer, it produces clusters of small white or pink star-shaped flowers. This ground cover is drought-tolerant and can handle harsh coastal conditions. Plant in full sun or part shade.
2. Star Jasmine
Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides) makes for a great ground cover plant with their beautifully scented white star-shaped flowers. You’ll find that the flowers bloom from late spring to autumn. Although, you’ll commonly see Star Jasmine as a climber, many people choose to use it as a ground cover or shrub. They can be planted in full sun to part shade.
3. White Creeping Thyme
White Creeping Thyme (Thymus serpyllum alba) is a beautiful yet hardy ground cover that produces small, fragrant flowers. It spreads quickly and can handle full sun, making it perfect for weed suppression in rock gardens or as a ground cover between pavers.
4. Dwarf Mondo Grass
Dwarf Mondo Grass (Ophiopogon japonicus ‘Nana’) is a small, clumping grass that produces narrow, green leaves that form a tight mat. Plant it in areas with morning sun or some shade as they struggle in direct hot sun.
5. Silver Carpet
Silver Carpet (Dymondia margaretae) is a very durable ground cover plant that thrives in an array of harsh conditions. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance ground cover then Silver Carpet might be right for you as they can tolerate dry, hot, and even frost conditions. You can even plant them in areas with high foot traffic.
6. Liriope Muscari
Liriope Muscari stays green all year, making it a great choice as a ground cover plant. Although they are hardy plants, they still produce beautiful blue or white flowers. It is best to plant them in partial shade but they can tolerate some sun. If it’s too shady, they can grow leggy and take more time to grow. Liriope Muscari is an eye-catching groundcover when planted on the edge of a border or path because.
7. Australian violet
Australian violet (Viola hederacea) has interesting kidney-shaped leaves along with purple and white flowers. They prefer light to moderate shade and are relatively low maintenance as a ground cover plant. They can tolerate light frost and a light amount of foot traffic.
Effectiveness of Using Ground Cover for Weed Suppression
Using ground covers for weed suppression can be time-consuming, but it is often worthwhile. Ground covers play a significant role in reducing soil erosion, preventing soil compaction, and improving soil quality. They also provide an aesthetically pleasing space and can create a habitat for wildlife.
Ground covers are an essential component of any garden or landscape. They provide a wide range of benefits, from weed suppression to creating an interesting outdoor space. Whether you are a seasoned gardener or just starting, incorporating ground covers into your garden or landscape can improve the health and beauty of your outdoor space.