6 Best Low Maintenance Lawn Grasses
Without accurate and well-groomed lawns, it is impossible to imagine any modern garden. But an ordinary lawn requires careful care and constant attention while caring for it does not come down to just trimming.
Those who want to simplify the care of the garden should think about alternative lawn plants options – covers, capable of creating no less spectacular and even more beautiful lawns. Such plants have a lot of purely decorative advantages:
- Almost all of them blossom;
- They have the ability to endure trampling;
- They bring luxurious textures to the gardens, suggesting to opt for new bold solutions.
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- 1 Veronica Filiformis – Almost No Maintenance Ground Cover
- 2 Sedum Spurium as a Non-Grass Option
- 3 Creeping Thyme Lawn
- 4 Creeping Clover
- 5 Cotula
- 6 Ajuga Reptans
- 7 Other Soil Coverers, Capable of Effectively Replacing the Lawn
Veronica Filiformis – Almost No Maintenance Ground Cover
Veronica Filiformis is a tracing perennial with the height of only 5 cm long, very thin shoots, densely dotted with bright rounded leaves of fairly light color. Thanks to the palette of green it seems that the lawn cover created by Veronica is always illuminated with bright sun rays. The flowering of Veronica, which starts in April and lasts for more than two months, is very touching.
Veronica creates amazingly bright, lacy, and lush-looking covers, covered with a veil of simple, but very lovely flowers. Veronica Filiformis is considered one of the best lawn grass replacement ideas for the sites, framed by bulbous or decorated with spring spots bulbous, in particular tulips, and also surrounded by curbs of irises.
Care for Veronica Filiformis
Veronica creates beautiful solid carpets only on fresh and preferably moist soils but at the same time, it is drought tolerant. This is one of the best plants adapting to both the bright sun and the shadow.
Veronica shoots take root in the place of contact with the soil, due to which the carpet is very dense. Even if as a result of a snowless winter the plant freezes, it usually manages to restore the beauty of the coating for the season. Some of the advantages of Veronica is the possibility of roll removal and good adaptability. It is quite aggressive but it is also controlled by trimming and simple tearing along the edges.
Sedum Spurium as a Non-Grass Option
Sedum is one of the most representative clans of garden perennials. Sedum can form dense integuments.
There are many types and varieties of sedum but sedum Spurium is most often used for the creation of carpets. It is perennial with a trailing rhizome, dense and fleshy leaves. The main advantage of sedum is the relatively faster growth. The plant creates a very dense carpet up to 15 cm high. This is one of the best ground cover plants you can walk on.
Care for Sedum Spurium
Sedum is perfectly fine even on the poorest soil. The only thing the plant cannot stand is wetlands. Drainage is necessary for sedum and the fertility of the soil will only favorably affect the rate of filling the area.
Creeping Thyme Lawn
All types of thyme without exception are an excellent alternative to a classic lawn due to the low height and density of the sod.
To create a wooly thyme lawn, you need to be patient but thyme will become a really durable basis for design. These plants with arboreal shoots have lying or erect and small whole thickly seated leaves. Thyme looms on the tops of branches in the form of loose-spike or capitate inflorescences.
Carpets from these plants attract large quantities of insects, they bring great pleasure and aroma. In many varieties, the aroma is unusual, citrus or more peppery.
Caring for Thyme
Thyme is a sun-loving plant that develops well on the drained, fertile, and light soil and does not tolerate the increased acidity. It is unpretentious, hardy, and drought-resistant, as well as welcomes the springing pruning.
Legendary three-leaved clover leaves that fascinate gardeners and offer to create strikingly bright and fresh-looking solid coverings are one of the most beautiful among lawn substitutes. It is perennial with creeping stems, able to take roots in internodes. Clover reaches a maximum of 40 cm in height only during flowering when globular apical inflorescences of white, pink, and greenish color rise above the mass of foliage.
The main advantage of clovers is the beauty of the carpet, which seems magnificent and dense at the same time. But one cannot forget about purely practical advantages. Clovers are resistant even to heavy loads and perfectly tolerate trampling. They protect the soil and improve its characteristics. They are shining and bring truly fabulous effects for landscaping. During flowering, clover carpets always attract bees and butterflies.
Care for Creeping Clover
Creeping clovers prefer sunny areas. In shades, they often lose varietal characteristics of the color of the leaves. They are not demanding in terms of the soils but they do not tolerate bogging and stagnation of moisture, they feel better on high-quality moist soils.
Cotula is not very well-known under its botanical name but it is one of the best alternatives to grass lawns resistant to trampling.
This is a New Zealand plant with complex, reminiscent fern but much smaller leaves, creating surprisingly beautiful carpets in texture.
Cotula is creeping perennials with a height of 1 to 30 cm, thriving and not afraid of trampling. The fern-leafed leaves of the cotula appear to be small green feathers, which change the very bright cold-green color to purple and bronze with the advent of autumn.
The flowering of the cotula is amazingly spectacular: on very long and thin peduncles, the heads of bright yellow flowers, which soar at an amazing height above the rug, are leaning under the wind.
Care for Cotula
Cotula feels well both in the sun and in the penumbra. This plant should be given a turf or sandy-clay soil, drained, with at least a minimum content of humus.
Ajuga is able to grow even in the most difficult areas, in arid and infertile soils. If the task is to create a solid continuous covering in the shade, completely replacing the lawn, it’s impossible to find the alternative to Ajuga. It is used to create beautiful alternative sites in areas with shading, as well as to create a continuous coverage, even where the trees are giants and where neither lawn nor other soil coverers can get close to their trunks.
Ajuga is a perennial with rather large glossy leaves for the soil cover, collected in unique bundles of rosettes on creeping shoots. The muted green color turns into purple spots and stains. In one season, each plant increases its area of spread per square meter. The height of the dense carpet, which seems to be ornamental, does not exceed 30 cm. In May and June, a large mass of flowers with luminous bluish-lilac or blue flowers rises above the mass of foliage.
Because of its propensity for aggressive absorption of the territory, it is perceived as a weed grass, but such an attitude is justified only in respect of the basic species, while the various plants with the same vigorous growth differ much more in friendliness. But even the species are really easy to control: they do not have powerful underground rhizomes and you can easily regulate the distribution without much effort by simply removing the side sockets.
Care for Ajuga
It is necessary to provide a fertile and moist soil for this no-mow ground cover, but this does not mean that it does not tolerate a drought. Creeping Ajuga is able to do without moisture almost a month, although due to the lack of comfortable conditions, the growth rate will suffer.
Other Soil Coverers, Capable of Effectively Replacing the Lawn
Some other alternatives to grass lawn include:
- Isotoma – It is able to withstand the trampling, long accustomed to a new place, but then compensates for the slow growth of the stormy filling of the soil with a thick, light, and very durable carpet covered with stars of snow-white flowers almost before the onset of frost.
- Muehlenbeckia – It is an aggressively expanding and rapidly spreading liana, creating a carpet of round miniature glossy leaves. It loves spring pruning and effectively changes color in autumn.
- Periwinkle – It is capable of creating dense coatings in the sun and in the shade, adorned with winter-green leaves on flexible shoots and pretty flowers.
- Starlet lanceolate – It is able to fill even areas with a shortage of moisture and poor soil around the trunks of trees-giants and perfectly suitable for making carpets in the shade.
- Green carpet – It is drought-resistant, creating a dense coating of small-leaved soil cover, changing the bright grassy color in the fall to bronze.
- Mazus reptant – Its lion-like flowers almost completely hide the elastic carpet of creeping shoots and openwork foliage.
- Sagina Subulata, or Scottish moss – It creates a carpet similar to a dense sponge, which is covered in spring with a scatter of miniature stars of flowers.
- Ground ivy – It is ivy with a bronze color of shoots and a rather bright spring flowering with lilac color, perfectly adapting to places with both bright and secluded lighting.