Perhaps the most challenging landscaping problem is that of what to plant on a steep slope. One of the best ways to control erosion with native plants on a steep slope is to plant it solidly with California lilac (Ceanothus.) The types of plants you choose will depend not only on your visual preference and vision but also the needs of the area. Clear-cutting is … Plants For Erosion Control Plants often bind soil together with their root systems, which means they’re able to serve as a protective layer that can help prevent soil erosion in several ways. Native Plants for Steep Slopes and Erosion Control By gripping the soil with their more extensive roots, certain native plants can do a better job at erosion control than turf grass, especially in shade areas where grass grows poorly. Erosion control can be a tough problem. Others have a fibrous root system which lacks a taproot. Not only will the grass, fescue and leaves help to slow down raindrops as they fall, the roots of the plants will also help to hold the soil together, making it harder for water to wash it away. Autumn Gardening Stories; By: Rosie Lerner. Selecting the right plants for the job, taking time to plant them properly, watering until they establish an extended root system and a little patience can produce a stunning sloped landscape. Once you have solved any moisture retention and erosion problems, it is time to evaluate the site further for exposure and zone, and plan what plants grow on slopes. The most effective, natural way to control soil erosion on steep slopes and embankments is to plant vegetation. I avoid plants with excessive pest or disease problems and that stray too far from their original planting site. If you need to bring your soil’s fertility levels back up, erosion control blankets are a better choice. You want the more shallow rooted ground covers to help cover the slope, but need deep rooted plants as well to help stabilize the slope. When choosing plants for your slope, erosion control and slope stabilization are primary concerns. Evergreen Groundcover Plants. Yard and Garden News. I require about 9,000 square feet and will then be planting beach grass and rosa rogusa plants in the area. Ideally, I am looking for a natural coir fiber product that can be placed on a 1:1 slopes. If you are looking for an option that grows up to 1-foot tall in zones 6 to 9, this may be the right plant. Bank Slope: The slope of the bank is the single most important factor that determines rate of erosion. Plants that leaf out early and hold their leaves until late fall, however, rise to the top of the heap. Plant Life columnist Valerie Easton talks with an expert on slope erosion. This selection should include plants with deep root systems to hold in the soil and add to its drought tolerance. The grass will not grow on many slopes, but there are beautiful plants that will thrive there. Native Plants for Shady Slopes Protecting a shady slope is different than protecting a sunny slope. The following plants are recommended for erosion control. So in this article I will mainly be looking at ways to keep the slopes and plant them with plants that will not only thrive on slopes but are low maintenance and provide a long term solution to erosion of the soil. Mix formulations are subject to change without notice depending on the availability of existing and new products. Keep in mind that using rocks as a solution for erosion control on slopes works best when your vegetation is already well-established and your soil nutrient levels are thriving. Black Mondo Grass. Soil Type: The consistency of the soil also determines rate of erosion. As promised, we’ll be providing you with a brief overview of the twelve plants that are superb for ground cover if you have slopes on your property. I personally prefer slopes to a flat "green-lawn-man" type of garden. Select plants for steep slope erosion control that are drought tolerant since the water will be draining off fairly quickly. Thorn-free shrubs always make maintenance a little easier. Make sure to use deep rooted shrubs and trees along with the more shallow rooted ground covers. Erosion Control Steep Slopes Slope Stabilization with Erosion Control Mats. Deep roots help to prevent erosion by stabilizing the soil. Plants establish root systems, which stabilises soil and prevents soil erosion.Having vegetation such as shrubs and trees will help control soil erosion and a forested steep slopes also warms the cool night air to create a thermal belt as described in our previous article. 3) they are heavy. Banks and slopes are often; Difficult to access ; Prone to erosion ; Prone to soil drying ; Often overrun with weeds; To help stabilise the soil and give speedy coverage, strong-growing climbers or ground-cover plants are required. Plants can help control slopes. Plants for Steep Slopes . Black Mondo grass produces basil leaves that are up to … Let’s dive right in with our first plant: Creeping Myrtle (Vinca minor) In forests, the soil surface is usually protected by a layer of mulch from decaying vegetation as well as a variety of surface growing plants. Flowering Groundcover Plants. Plants for Erosion control & Slopes. For any slopes greater than 50% (1 foot vertical rise for every 2 feet horizontal run) install plants that do not require mowing. Virtually all species and selections of ceanothus are recommended for erosion control. Select a variety below to get all the details, prices and see more photos. The best way to control erosion in clay soil is to use plants to cover the area. And erosion problems are increasing; not just because of climate-change extremes. Plants for Steep Slope Erosion Control. DIYNetwork.com landscape experts share facts about how to choose and where to place groundcovers and plants used as lawn alternatives. Some plants produce a large central root called the taproot. Many suitable plants are hardy in USDA plant hardiness zone 5, where temperatures don't go below minus 20 degrees F. Liriope spicata (creeping lillyturf) is a grass-like green plant that spreads quickly by underground roots and holds the soil effectively. Good erosion control and strengthens the soil up to 328% (see research). Best Plants For Erosion Control On Slopes. The method is effective only on gentle slopes: the P (or erosion control practices) factor will be 0.5 on slopes between 1 and 8%, 0.6 on 8 to 12% slopes, 0.8 on 17 to 20% slopes, and close to 1 on slopes steeper than 25% (Wischmeier and Smith 1978). Grows 1-2’. Fast Growing Groundcover Plants. Plants that have deep, extensive root systems can successfully grow on hillsides. Leaves shed by trees accumulate on the forest floor and intercept any raindrops that make it through the canopy. Juniper was widely used as a ground cover in the 70’s and 80s. These plants are not appropriate to control erosion on a slope because 1) they are alien plants and not part of our natural plant community, 2) they have very shallow roots. Your contractor may recommend the use of a geotextile, which are man-made materials, laid on the earth and pinned into place. The soil and water bioengineering approach is combined with bamboo traits and mechanical properties. Consider terracing or retaining walls for steep slopes. Heavy rain can spell disaster for soil on steep slopes, but careful plant management, ground cover plants, mulches and terracing help prevent it from being washed away. New York fern, Thelypteris noveboracensis. These will be great for erosion control and possibly some other benefits. For example, firm plant placement in the ground helps slow water flow since the stems act as thick barriers. Quick Erosion Control Cover Mix. Lucia™ Dianella caerulea ‘DC101’ PBR Deep green foliage with mulberry flower buds in spring that then open into purple flowers that sit high above the foliage, followed by purple berries in summer. All are native, and most are good for moist, shaded conditions, which are often the conditions found in eroding yards. And no mowing is required! On aggressive slopes we recommend using an erosion fabric along with any of these grasses, especially on sandy soils. 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