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Planting ground cover on a grassy bank.

United Kingdom Gb

I have a grassy bank which is difficult to mow, so I am planning to plant with Thymus, Dianthus, Campanula, Stonecrop type ground cover. Do I need to remove the existing turf or if planted within the grass will they eventually suppress the growth of the grass?



Hi Keennovice, welcome to GOY.
Skim off most of the turf, lightly fork the areas you wish to plant, working in compost as you go. Any grass growing afterwards will be easier to remove.
Hope this helps.

15 Feb, 2009


The grass, unless it is the finest lawn grass will take over and wipe out your plants. Where we have done this I used Roundup a couple of times to kill of the grass and weeds andd then skimmed off the toop inch or so of dead matted material and moss etc. This also removes a lot of weed seeds. Then you can plant it up. Believe me, any grass left in WILL grow.. There speaks the voice of bitter experience.

15 Feb, 2009


I was visualising those poor plants struggling against the encroaching grass and wondering how on earth they would survive??

No - Docbob and Owdboggy have said it all - get rid of the grass first.

15 Feb, 2009


Thanks for the advice everyone. Looks like there is no substitute for doing it properly! What a fantastic website this is and everyone so helpful. There is even a chance I shall become a 'proper' gardener with all this free advice on tap - isn't the web an amazing thing. Here's to the grubby hands and aching limbs of the future.

15 Feb, 2009


If you do skim off the grass, as if removing turf. Stack it neatly somewhere else in the garden upside down on top of each other. The grass will die, and with in 6-12 months the soil will be fine and crumble and good to use else where.

I do this every time I dig a new border.

15 Feb, 2009

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