From:Portland, ME Region: Northeast Topic: Turf Title: Low maintenance native plants for sloping lawn in Maine Answered by: Nan Hampton
Hello, we live in Maine and have clay-ey soil with a lot of sun. I suspect the soil is acidic as well. We would like to replace at least part of our small front lawn with native ground cover or grasses. The lawn is steeply sloped in some places and mowing is a big problem. Also, we have a lot of weeds now and are concerned that getting a lawn going would require the use of lots of pesticides and herbicides which we would like to avoid. Do you have any suggestions for native plants that would not be too time consuming?
Grasses generally do well in sunny areas. Fescue grasses (Genus Festuca) are low growing, have very fine texture, tolerate drought, grow both in the sun and shade, and prefer acid soil. There is an excellent article, Low & Slow Fescues by Stevie Daniels, that describes their use and the characteristics of several different species of Festuca. The Prairie Nursery in Westfield, Wisconsin has the "no-mow" fescue seed mix. Steve Daniels also has an article, Planting a Native Grass Lawn Step by Step to guide you through the process. You can also download an article in PDF format, Native Lawns, from the Native Plant Library on our web page. Although the article is geared towards Buffalo grass and Central Texas, it has tips for preparing the site and maintaining the lawn.
Need shade friendly native grass for lawn under pine trees in Carthage, TX. September 07, 2010 - My home is situated on six acres of woods in the East Texas piney woods area. Other than a few beds I have tried to plant, the yard has not been landscaped. I am trying to cover dirt and weeds in a p... view the full question and answer
Groundcover for Laredo Texas July 04, 2011 - I am in Laredo, TX and no longer want to waste water on grass. I would like to pull it all out and plant native, drought resistant ground cover - low growing, between 6-12 inches, sun and partial sha... view the full question and answer
Is installing irrigation with Habiturf a good idea in Round Rock Texas? December 05, 2011 - Mr. Smarty Plants,
I am in the process of planning a new lawn in my front yard. We have decided to plant the Habiturf seed mix (thank you, by the way). Originally, we planned on installing a spri... view the full question and answer
Shade plants to replace a lawn in PA June 01, 2011 - Our neighborhood is built into a hill and our backyard is along the slope. We cannot keep grass in the area (except for a few clumps). The area is mostly shaded and moist-dry however when rain comes t... view the full question and answer
Process of converting from lawn to wildflower meadow in New Jersey March 17, 2006 - I live in northern New Jersey and have an acre of property which is currently a grassy lawn. I would like to make a meadow where the lawn is. What is the process to convert from a lawn to a meadow? Th... view the full question and answer