elfin thyme and other miniature groundcovers

Discussion in 'Groundcovers' started by janetdoyle, Oct 19, 2009.

  1. janetdoyle

    janetdoyle Active Member

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    Location:
    Victoria [Saanich, actually, northeast of Victoria
    I notice that the miniature groundcovers like Elfin thyme and woolly thyme and items like Corsican mint and others are all looking marvellous in the warmish moist weather, very emerald-green and lush, or grey-green or variegated/silvery depending on the plant... This is really their best time of year [mine in late summer looked a bit swamped by other plants], and perhaps they should be used more to decorate flower beds where the spent old stems and foliage are being cleared away and the area can look sort of ratty or otherwise un-planted. They are also wonderful around walkway borders where one's eye runs to checking what's on the ground, and in mini-landscapes.

    I'd like to see more discussion here of groundcovers! Last year we had some good photo-sharing and discussions.
     
  2. togata57

    togata57 Rising Contributor

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    Got a small pot of Irish moss, Sagina subulata, several years ago and planted it in my garden. Love its texture, tiny size and white flowers. Slow-growing, but that's OK! Intend to get more of it and plant it in various nooks. Plan for spring!
     
  3. janetdoyle

    janetdoyle Active Member

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    Interesting -- I have tried Irish moss here and it doesn't seem to last. Either it dies out in hot sun or disappears in winter. Or, which is more likely, it has its cycles like any other plant and has a downtime... I must try some again and keep it well-irrigated in our dry [although not really hot] summers on southern Vancouver Island.

    I am curious: what temperature are your mid-winters? Here in south coastal British Columbia, Canada, we had an exceptionally cold winter last year with unusual temperatures down to maybe -12 C or 10 to 11 F often enough to cause some trouble to plants normally happy during our winters.
     
  4. togata57

    togata57 Rising Contributor

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    We usually get a few days below 0 F, and stretches of 10-20. Above 32 is good!

    My moss periodically gets HOLES in it, and nibbles around the edges (squirrels!)---last winter I had a bit of it get toasted from the cold, but it grew back some over the summer. Any new moss I get is going to go in shadier locations.

    Also, I'm going to be more assiduous about clearing away overhanging plants. Everything is fine in the spring when everything's just beginning to grow...but in a couple of weeks: "Hey! Where'd the moss go??" It's there, just hidden from view. Granted, the shade is a good thing, but I'm going to clear off enough to be able to see it!
     

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