Ground cover is a great alternative for many people who prefer a lower maintenance lawn, or even a lawn that has more of an evergreen hue and the occasional colors of flowering. While many variations of ground cover will still require some maintenance, such as edging, without the often-weekly mowing of grass, your ground cover provides a great option to keep your curb appeal up, without the frequent maintenance. Unfortunately, not all ground cover is suitable for the PNW, and some native plants can become extremely invasive, and prove difficult to remove should you wish to change your landscape design.
Yellow Archangel is one of the most popular ground covers that you’ll see residing in the PNW, especially in Washington and unfortunately, while it does provide a stunning display of ornamental leaves, it can become wildly invasive and prove quite difficult to remove. Due to its invasive nature, you’ll often see Yellow Archangel in many natural forest areas, and while many wish to dispose of the plant, some still wish to keep in in hanging baskets for its trailing abilities. However, even if contained in a hanging basket, one poorly disposed clipping can lead to a full yard of Yellow Archangel ground cover.
Luckily, there are alternative options that still provide you with stunning ground cover, without the invasive traits. Try to plant Wintercreeper, also commonly called Silver Queen or Emerald Gaiety. Wintercreeper is low growing, boasts variegated leaves for a great pop of color and unlike Yellow Archangel which thrives best is shaded areas, Wintercreeper ground cover can tolerate both full sun and shade, making it versatile and able to cover all areas of your desired landscape.
If you’re looking for a little more color, another great alternative to Yellow Archangel is Heucheras & Heucherellas. Also low-growing, this perennial boasts ornamental leaves as well a stunning delicate flowers that reach above the green foliage. Able to tolerate both full sun as well as shade, not only can you plant Heucheras & Heucherellas in any area of your landscape, but their flowers often attract hummingbirds to your garden or yard.
Lastly, Wild Ginger (Asarum Caudatum) is also native to Washington and this low-growing perennial is often known for its pleasant aroma of lemon and ginger, heart shaped leaves, and year-round evergreen color. Growing in expanding mats, Wild Ginger is great for covering large spaces, and as a bonus is drought tolerant once established in your yard or garden. While in some cases Wild Ginger may be able to withstand full sun, it thrives best in full shade or areas that only see partial or limited sun.
If you’re interested in changing your landscape, would like to add or service an irrigation system, or if you have any further questions regarding landscape services, please feel free to contact our office at any time.