Alternatives to Grass

At Whispering Springs Nursery in Jasper, GA, we have a little bit of a different idea of landscaping than many of the companies who are located in Canton, Woodstock, or Atlanta. When we do landscape design or installation around Big Canoe or other surrounding areas, we work to make our projects blend into and beautifuify the natural landscape, rather than altering it. Our woodland garden landscapes are typically low maintenance and use species that grow easily in moist, shady areas. Grass is not one of our top players, so we wanted to show you the options that we use for groundcover, other than typical turfgrass.

Mulchmulch groundcover

Mulch is a great natural alternative to grass. As it ages and biodegrades, it benefits your plants by creating a richer and more nutritious soil. To install mulch as a ground cover, you first want to put down a layer of landscape cloth. This will prevent weeds from growing up through your mulch and will help to retain moisture. Mulch is relatively low maintenance, of course it does not require weekly watering and mowing, but once or twice a year you will need to put down a new layer of mulch to keep it thick and looking fresh. To create a path through your mulch yard, simply lay down pavers or stones on the landscape cloth and mulch around them.

Fill in with Groundcover

There are many ‘toe tickler’ ground covering plants that you can use to cover your yard. Thyme, chamomile, or Corsican mint are all great groundcovering plants that will feel good on your bare feet and release a scent as you walk across them. These are recommended to be used in an area that has light foot traffic. While they will hold up to being walked on, they are not nearly as hardy as grass and can be damaged with too much traffic.


Instead of covering most or all of your yard with plants, you could instead use gravel or stones to cover the majority of space, and simply add in a few of the groundcover plants to add a softness to your design and fill in the empty edges. Flagstone, brick, and many pavers are great options for creating large ‘flooring’ areas, or you could create concrete pavers of your own with a little ingenuity and patience.

These are a few options that Whispering Springs recommends if you are looking for an alternative to grass for your woodland garden. Call us today if you would like to schedule a landscape design consultation or if we can help you install the yard of your dreams!

Img from Flickr.