Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
1 rating

Thursday - May 01, 2008

From: Murphysboro, IL
Region: Midwest
Topic: Groundcovers, Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Plants for narrow strip between sidewalk and fence
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have a strip of land about 5 inches wide and 30 feet long -- between the fence and the sidewalk -- that I would like to plant something that would look nice and wouldn't require the weedeater every few days. The location receives full sun for most of the day.

ANSWER:

Here are a few suggestions for some low-growing plants that will fit nicely into your area. Some of them may overhang your sidewalk a bit; but, as long as it is relatively wide, they should work nicely. You could use any of them alone or mix them for variety. Also, you can see more possibilities on the Illinois Recommended page.

Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)

Fragaria virginiana (Virginia strawberry)

Coreopsis lanceolata (lanceleaf tickseed)

Geranium maculatum (spotted geranium)

Geum triflorum (old man's whiskers)

Heuchera richardsonii (Richardson's alumroot)

Phlox pilosa (downy phlox)

Sisyrinchium campestre (prairie blue-eyed grass)

The following plant prefers shade or part shade so it may or may not work in your strip, but it does make a nice groundcover.

Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)


Carex pensylvanica

Fragaria virginiana

Coreopsis lanceolata

Geranium maculatum

Geum triflorum

Heuchera richardsonii

Phlox pilosa

Sisyrinchium campestre

Mitchella repens

 

 

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Plants under oak trees
April 21, 2009 - I have a large live oak (actually several) in my front yard, which basically puts the beds at the foundation of my house in full shade. I tore out the builder-boxwoods and privets, hoping to plant so...
view the full question and answer

Plants to grow between concrete pavers on the patio in Rock Hill, SC..
December 31, 2014 - I have a patio of concrete pavers, about 2 feet by 2 feet each. It gets very little sun. No morning sun at all. The zoysia grass we have between the pavers now does not grow well at all. Do you ha...
view the full question and answer

Hummingbird Attracting Plants for Shade in Smithville, TX
March 28, 2012 - I want hummingbird plants for shade.
view the full question and answer

Negative and positive effects of invasive dandelions from Rama Ontario
January 12, 2012 - How do Dandelions have a negative impact of being a invasive and a Positive impact of being a invasive species ?
view the full question and answer

Failure of TX bluebonnets to thrive
May 28, 2015 - We have had extraordinary luck with bluebonnets growing in our driveway of decomposed granite--until last year and this year. The bluebonnets seem to be drying up and wilting away. The ones in other a...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.