How to Choose and Care for Ornamental Grasses and Ground Covers

Ornamental grasses and groundcovers offer both visual and practical benefits. Strategically placed, these plants can add interest, texture and help define borders or transition areas within your landscape.  And the root systems do a wonderful job of slowing erosion. 

Choosing the right groundcover for your landscape is important. Factors that need to be taken into consideration include:

  • The amount of space (large or small?)
  • The topography of the location (sloped or flat?)
  • The amount of sun (full sun, partial or shade?)
  • Personal preferences regarding color or texture
  • Plants that spread versus non-spreading varieties
  • Fast growth versus slow growth

If you have a large, sloped area that’s prone to erosion, a fast-growing, spreading plant (such as English Ivy) is an attractive option to quickly fill the space and stop the loss of topsoil. However, you also need to think long-term about groundcover maintenance.  Once established, a fast-growing groundcover needs to be pruned and maintained routinely to prevent it from becoming invasive. 

Certain groundcovers, such as liriope, are popular plants that define pathways and borders. Liriope is a grass-like plant with small white or purple flowers in the Summer. The Lenten rose is a non-invasive evergreen that flowers January through April, adding interest in a landscape during a time when many other plants are dormant.

Routine maintenance for ornamental grasses includes removing old growth every winter to help the plants rejuvenate in Spring. This also helps the plants maintain uniform color, texture, size and shape. 

Ready to protect your soil and define your landscape with an attractive groundcover? The experts at Handy Andy Outdoors can recommend the best type of groundcover that will solve your specific landscape challenges.  We also source our plants from trusted vendors and offer quick and efficient professional installation.  Contact us today!