Best way to impoverish the soil?
I know that's a provocative title, but I'm seriously considering it.
Here's what I want to accomplish: I have a small slope between the front lawn and public sidewalk, with widely-spaced juniper shrubs. I want to plant a groundcover to fill in the spaces around the junipers and prevent weeds.
The perfect groundcover would be low-maintenance, evergreen, a regional native, feed some wildlife but not appeal to deer, have flowers and berries.
I believe Bearbery (arctostaphylos uva-ursi) has those qualities and is ALMOST a perfect match for conditions - sun, eastern mid-Atlantic zone 6. However, the descriptions say it prefers poor, sandy dry soil.
I'm not sure whether the soil there is loam or clay, but it definitely is not sandy, and is moist not dry. We just recently moved in, and didn't know enough to mulch the bare areas, and within it seems like 2 weeks there was a VERY lush growth of ugly weeds. It took hours to dig all the weeds out.
So I was thinking of planting large boulders between the junipers, and removing a layer of soil all over, mix it with sand (what kind?) to hopefully make it less hospitable for the weeds but more so for the bearberry. I know usually people want to enrich, not impoverish, their soil, but I really want the bearberry.
Is this a ridiculous idea? Is this the right way to prep the area for bearberry? Pls comment - I've never done any gardening before and am totally new at this.