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Consider alternative plants

Trees, shrubs, perennials, ground covers and wild flowers promote biodiversity in your yard.

Consider other plants for ground covers in shaded or dry areas. Periwinkle and Lily of the Valley have it made in the shade, while Creeping Juniper and Thyme have fun in the sun.

Variety is the spice of gardening

A diverse landscape is better for the environment, because it's more attractive to birds, butterflies and other wildlife, and it can be easier to maintain when the right plants are chosen to suit the conditions.

Diversity is a good thing

Just like in the soil, a good diversity of organisms in the landscape supports a healthier plant environment. Consider other plants that can make good ground covers, especially for shaded, dry or other difficult sites.

These include hosta, Lily of the Valley, creeping phlox, Japanese spurge, periwinkle, bugleweed, sweet woodruff, thyme and creeping juniper.

Go wild and experiment

Once established, alternative landscapes such as native plants (visit Native Plants in Edmonton Ecozone for examples), mulched perennial beds, and rock or alpine gardens tend to be drought resistant and require less maintenance.

Source: Lawn Ecology, Health Canada, 2002.

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