Choice of groundcover for deep shade

Asked April 29, 2018, 9:50 AM EDT

I have a section of lawn that is in decline because of deep dry shade. I was looking at Lirope spicata, or L. muscari as replacement plants, but I have seen each labelled as invasive. Would like grass-like foliage but this is not essential. I would like suggestions for a ground cover to replace this section of lawn. If there is a native that is available that's OK, too.

Baltimore County Maryland

1 Response

Some terrific native groundcovers would be: Canadian ginger, phlox stolonifera (purple flowers), iris reticulata (purple flowers), ferns--especially Christmas fern (evergreen) and hay-scented fern (moderate spreader). Tiarella (white flowers)

Whatever you plant, water them during dry spells for the first two years (spring and fall, too) so they can get established. They will have a lot of competition from tree roots for moisture and nutrients. The plants above should all be able to handle dry shade once established.

Take a look at "Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat and Conservation Landscaping" for color photos and a useful chart format with conditions.