sunny, weed infested slope

Asked October 13, 2015, 12:00 PM EDT

What is the best low maintenane plant or plants I can use in this area. My last effort Russian Sage to no avail. I was thinking maybe Ivy?

Prince George's County Maryland

1 Response

Whatever you do, do not plant English ivy. That is invasive and destructive when it spreads (by birds) to our parks and wild natural areas.

We assume you want something not too tall. You can try: switch grass (an ornamental grass), St. Johns wort, Low-Grow sumac (shrubby), asters, day lilies, moss phlox (very low),sedums (there are many. an assortments might be nice), low junipers, dwarf nandina, cotoneaster (these last three are shrubs.) There are also some good dwarf disease-resistant roses.

If you plant groups of odd numbers, you'll get a more natural look. You might want to try several different species and see which ones like your site.

Go to a reputable nursery, such as Behnke's. (One of the best in the state.) Ask for recommendations and describe the site.

Any plants you choose will need to be watered during dry spells for the first two years while they get established. Keep in mind that rain often runs off slopes and does not sink in, so plants on a slope get even less water than other plants! Once they are established, their stems and shoots will slow down the water. Switchgrass is especially good at this.