Ground cover plants that flower all season long add colour and interest to flower beds. These plants help choke out weeds, prevent moisture loss and prevent soil erosion. A ground cover is a low-growing, mat-forming or trailing plant. These plants include some perennials, shrubs, roses and vines. Like other plants, ground covers have specific growing requirements, so choose a plant based on the location where it will grow.
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Dianthus are old-fashioned cottage garden plants. They are low-growing plants, perfect for the front of the border or as a ground cover throughout the garden. Grow them in full sun with well-drained, slightly alkaline soil. Dianthus is available as both a perennial plant, which means it will come back every year, and an annual plant, which means it grows, flowers, sets seed and dies in one growing season. Some varieties of dianthus will self-seed. Depending on the variety, dianthus is hardy all over the British Isles.
Flower carpet rose
Flower carpet roses are low-growing ground covers that grow approximately 75 cm to 90 cm (2 1/2 to 3 feet) tall. They come in a variety of colours including yellow, coral, pink, red and white. The prolific flowers bloom all summer long into fall. They are disease resistant, and once established, drought tolerant. Plant them in full sun and feed them with a time-release fertiliser early in the growing season. There is no need to deadhead, or remove the faded flowers, since the roses will keep blooming, and generally pruning is not necessary either, other than to shape them. Flower carpet roses are hardy in all of the UK.
Nepeta X faassenii
Nepeta X faassenii, also known as Walker's Low catmint will grow 10 inches tall. It is a mounding plant, with lavender-blue flowers that bloom all summer long and grey-green foliage. To encourage a larger flush of blooms after the first flush fades, give the plant a hard pruning. It is a good ground cover to choose for naturalising an area in either full sun or part sun. If grown in part sun, choose a site that has morning sun and afternoon shade. It is drought tolerant, but requires well-drained soil to thrive. Nepeta X faassenii is hardy in all of the UK.
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- "Ground Covers for Easier Gardening"; Daniel J. Foley; 1972
- "Covering Ground"; Barbara W. Ellis; 2007
- "Perennial Ground Covers"; David S. MacKenzie; 2002
- "Taylor's Guide to Ground Covers"; David Michener and Nan Sinton; 2002
- "Timber Press Pocket Guide to Ground Covers"; David S. MacKenzie and Timber Press Staff; 2006