Ground Cover Ideas?

New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

We are working on a driveway landscaping project. The Captain is really on board for this - his design and priority is that he be able to drive his truck completely around the house and onto the driveway (where the stones are) to tow our fleet of backyard boats out which are stored in the back yard. There will be a tree at each end with some adjacent plantings, and ground cover between the stepping stones.

We want a low growing ground cover to fill in around the stones (driveable overable). I have a good supply of the lime green sedum on hand which would transplant easily and probably fit the bill, but am open to other ideas, like something that doesn't winter kill. Creeping thyme sounds really good, but the thyme in my herb bed always dies way back in winter (Zone 8A) Sometimes it comes back and sometimes not. Do you know of any hardy creeping thyme or something else evergreen? Needs to be pretty low growing. I have dwarf mondo grass also, but that's already along the sidewalk leading to the house.

This is an exciting project - we thought it would take weeks but it's coming along quickly. (Oh, I almost forgot to mention, we have two large red pots to put in the landscaping around the trees. I am not sure how this is going to work but I'm not going to deter a husband who is interested in a garden project!)

Entlie

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Grantsboro, NC(Zone 8b)

I love the ice plant it will spread and has cute pink flowers
Do know the other name of it but its beautiful
Lavina

New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

Good suggestion, Lavina. Do you know if you can drive over it?

(Zone 9a)

I love ice plants too but they are succulents and I think they would squish if driven over. There are some tougher ground covers called "stepables" available in some nurseries or probably online. Some have much smaller leaves and would not show damage as much. Here's a link that might help.http://www.stepables.com/


New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

Thanks, Ardesia. I'm definitely going to check out the link. I bought a few creeping thyme with pink flowers at Lowe's - right now just to put between the concrete drain wall and the driveway, but watching it to see if it might work - not wild about the pink flowers because we have red pots.

I have tons of the light green sedum and right now I'm thinking I can put that in and if it squashes down, just sprinkle more on. However, I might be able to do the whole dang thing in dwarf mondo - evergreen, would withstand driving, etc. but it might be "too much" with dwarf mondo everywhere.

We wouldn't be driving over it every day - just every now and then when we need to hook up a boat and haul it out of the back yard.

I'll post some photos as we progress...trees not here yet.

Lynn

New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

Ardesia - LOVE that website. I want them all! I like the creeping thyme with the white flowers. My sedum is probably the "stonecrop" on that site.

New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

So this is not completely finished, but we have made good progress. The jury is still out as to whether the trees will make it (Santa Rosa Plums). I bought them from a wholesale seller at on a garden tour, and I didn't have any choice in the delivery time. The pots have turned out very well. Used some "free" cannas from the back yard as the thriller, white petunias and light green and black sweet potato vines. You could have knocked me over when The Captain said he wanted to add a drip system, bought all the stuff and had a great time putting it in. It is a real timesaver.

The open area in the middle is so that we can drive the truck around the house to pick up various small boats, trailers, etc. stored in the back. The dwarf mondo grass is another freebie, from the left side of the walk approaching the house. May or may not put vinca minor in the areas around the trees and pots (you guessed it - already here in the back yard.

This has been a fun project and it has really dressed up our yard. Mailbox area still to go.

Entlie

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Grantsboro, NC(Zone 8b)

Looks great, glad to see someone on the Carolina forum

(Zone 9a)

Wow, that looks great, those pots are showstoppers. What are you going to do during the winter when the cannas are down? Maybe some cheap evergreens from a big box store?

New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

Cheap evergreens are definitely a possibility. I have some seeds - giant red mustard, lacinato kale, and pansies that I should have probably planted by now but need space to plant them. I plan to take up the sweet potato vines, cut off the greenery and store in packing paper - maybe they'll make it.

When we got the two pots done, decided we needed a third matching pot on the other side of the drive. Lowes had two left and both were cracked. Got one for 50% off, glued it liberally, and now we have an identical pot on the other side. One of the main pot cannas is about to bloom again (yellow).

Entlie

New Bern, NC(Zone 8a)

The cannas are blooming again - glad they are both yellow. Since they were free, I didn't know for sure.
Entlie

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Summerville, SC

The Mazus seems to be very strong. You can walk on it and I am sure when it mats up, it would be good for driving on it. The Lavender one seems nicer to me than the white, but my preference, I am sure. Worth a look and see. Looks like this project is well planned out. Good luck.

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