DIY and how-to
Groundcovers are a wonderful alternative to a standard lawn and they’re also ideal for covering tricky areas, such as steep banks or areas under trees, where grass won’t grow. Here are a few of our favourite groundcovers, as well as advice on where they will fare best.
- Corsican mint (Mentha requienii) forms a flat carpet of small green leaves. It grows well in sun or shade and gives off a fresh minty smell when stepped on.
- Creeping rosemary is the low growing form of this popular herb. It fares best in full sun and bears pale purple flowers in spring and summer.
- Plectranthus is a great indigenous groundcover. It grows well under trees or in other shady spots.
- Lotus berthelotii is an attractive groundcover with fine silver leaves and red flame-like flowers. It is drought tolerant and grows well in full sun.
- Portulacaria afra ‘Aurea’, also known as Elephant’s Food, is a low-growing succulent with tiny golden leaves. It is drought-resistant and grows well from cuttings.
- Bindweed is a closely knitted plant that forms a mat that easily covers large areas. It bears blue or white flowers in spring. Bindweed copes well in cold conditions.
- Dymondia margaretae works very well when grown between paving stones. It has curly grey-green leaves and produces yellow flowers in summer. It grows best in light shade.
- Juniperus horizontalis is a low growing conifer. It grows quickly and has attractive blue-green foliage which turns purple in winter.