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What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

Posted by watergirl216 7, Columbia Gorge (My Page) on
Tue, Sep 23, 08 at 1:31

I just finished a stone slab walkway, in which I was originally going to lay river rock in between all of the stones.Now I think it's too much rock and would like to plant ground cover in between them instead.So, a few questions...

Can I plant ground cover in the fall and will it survive our harsher winters and warm, dry summers here in the Columbia Gorge? We live in White Salmon, just across the columbia river from Hood River. In the winter we get the rains from the west but also the cold temps from the dessert. In the summer, heat and wind.

If I can plant ground cover now, would it be possible to buy it in seed or is there someplace online I could buy it in bulk? I can't find any at local nurseries or home depot.

Lastly, what kind of ground cover would be good? The area is under a big Japanese Maple, gets lots of shade with northern exposure, but some late afternoon sun. No grass as we don't want to mow. Something low and creeping that can take foot traffic!

Here's our path:

Here is a link that might be useful: The path needing groundcover

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

  • Posted by knotz 8/PNW WA (My Page) on
    Tue, Sep 23, 08 at 12:15

What about some scotch moss or irish moss??

RE: What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

In my experience Sagina subulata (Irish and Scotch moss) needs full sun. Though it looks like moss it isn't and it grows poorly and weedy in partial shade.

For shade there is Ajuga or Corsican mint and I'm sure others.

I've linked the Stepables website. They have a search that you can use to narrow down your search.

Here is a link that might be useful: Stepables

RE: What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

I think it depends on what look you want. I have literally hundreds of feet of paths and walkways. I have stepping stones, 3x3 spaced pads, and flagstone. I used blue star creeper for the stepping stones and some of the spaced pads. Then I transitioned to washed 5/8" minus when the pads entered the back yard (the steps are rose/charcoal with gray curb on both sides). I am tickled with both. In my pond area, I wanted a more natural look so I chose random Montana Bronze flagstone and Platt's Black so it would not be such a contrast and get too busy. I was going more for a living mortar look and as it fills in, it really looks great. Either of these could go sun/shade me thinks :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: Platt's Black/Montana Bronze

RE: Bluestar

Here's an old picture of the steppers and bluestar creeper. It's a totally different look than the Platt's.

Here is a link that might be useful: steppers/bluestar

RE: What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

I probably wouldn't try Cotula or corsican mint where you are because of the possibility they might not adapt well to your climate. You might look at thyme or blue star creeper, which ought to be able to take quite a bit of shade where you are.

RE: What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

I planted blue star creeper between big slabs of broken concrete and it turned around and grew the other way into my shrubs and perennials and left between the slabs bare. I love it but it is soooo annoying.

RE: What groundcover to plan between stone walk?

Just a word of caution re blue star creeper. See my post, "What's the best way to kill blue star creeper", on Sep. 6. Your photo suggests that bsc would work much better than the scenario we had; i.e., as a lawn replacement. It is beautiful and steppable, but so very invasive.

Also, when we started the project, we needed a lot of starter plants (at least, we thought we did, not realizing how fast they spread). So we ordered flats through a local nursery and cut them up to plant, rather than buying a gazillion of those small containers, thereby saving a lot of money. The nursery got the flats from somewhere in Oregon, but they weren't available year round and might not be available now. When we were shopping, we just happened to see some ground covers in the large flats; never realized before that they came that way. They were out of bsc flats at the time, but special ordered for us. You might ask at your local nursery once you decide. Good luck on your selection!

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