We're going to be laying down flagstone in our front yard and half will be in the shade with the other half in mostly full sun. I'm a walker so I've been on the lookout to see what folks use in between the flagstone and - for the most part - it's grass however on a walk through the Venice Canals (Venice, CA), I saw this beautiful deep green mounded moss that looked glorious and rich in between the stone. Of course did I take a photo? Drats. I don't know what kind of moss it is. It definitely had an undulating form to it and the color was very green. Unfortunately the moss was in a shaded area so if I used this moss, all over, I'm assuming it would dry up in the sunny areas. Since the entire section of flagstone is one whole area (sort of shaped like an 'L'), if I use two different kinds of groundcover between the flagstone, what will happen? Will they stay separate or will one take over the other or ?
Moss between flagstone?
I have mother of time between some of my flag stones. I had better qualify that it has cover the flag stones where it is. It is mostly in the sun. The moss I have has volunteered and is in the shade. I haven't a clue what it is, but it doesn't grow in the sun.
I have both thyme and moss between my stones - thyme in the sun and moss in the shade. I've had mixed results with the moss. I've used several different kinds, depending on what was easiest to find. Some has done pretty well and others haven't. I'd suggest trying to find some moss in an area that's as close to the same environment as where you're putting it. For example, I collected a lot from the woods in my own yard and some more from my neighbor's garden who had it growing where she didn't want it. I just stuck it between my stones. One of my biggest problems is that I mulch with chopped leaves which attracts worms to my garden (yay!), which in turn attracts robins and turkeys (boo!) who scratch the leaves onto my path. It's very difficult to sweep the leaves without removing the moss in the process.
Here's a picture of the moss last year when I stuck it in:
In the sun, I planted two different kind of thyme. I used mostly elfin thyme, which I believe is the shortest thyme you can get. It's doing well and is starting to cover the steps in some areas. I'm not sure if that will become a problem or if traffic will keep it under control. Traffic hasn't seemed to bother it so far. I've also had a few places where some has died off recently. Most is doing very well though.
On the steps, I used wooly thyme which is a tiny bit taller and seems to cover just a little more aggressively.
I just tore out a bunch of mother of thyme to the right of the path below the wall. You can see a tiny geranium in its place in the picture. I didn't like it. It was much taller, was seeding all over the place and looked scraggly even when it was in bloom. It would have been way too big for between my stones. I like the elfin and wooly thyme though.
I also have volunteer moss in the shade, and wooly thyme in the sun. I prefer wooly thyme between pavers to other types of thyme, because wooly has minimal flowers. Many of the creeping thymes flower beautifully, and bees love the flowers. I love bees, just not where I'm walking ;-) For the moss, have you tried a local garden center? You probably wouldn't need much to get it started, if it's in hospitable conditions.
I've had more luck with thyme than with moss - but that's mostly because of the squirrels here - they LOVE digging in the nice soft moss.
Corsican mint is a wonderful plant for between flagstones in the sun. It will take a lot of shade also. It's not invasive and has a real mossy look to it. Smells like heaven when you step on it. Sometimes my dog rolls in it and she smells delicious.
Doss - an excellent suggestion. Corsican grows so snugly to the ground and is so hardy - I'm adding it to my list (along with Pink Chintz Thyme) for my front yard redo for next year. Thanks for the reminder!!
Corsican mint sounded great until I looked it up. zone 6 and up. druad have you grown it is 5?
Yeah, but make that a 5b with the possibility of microclimate. It's in direct sun and next to brick and stone, so it may have some benefit from that - I don't give it any special wintertime attention. This will be it's second winter - we'll see if it really likes it or if it was just teasing me. Now, I did have some in a container that turned into a lovely dried specimen this summer, as I chose what to save and it didn't make it. (I bought some of those "absorbing crystals" afterward, and they are lovely!)