Garden dilemma

Today I attacked some of that awful mock strawberry that invades the lawn and some grass-like weeds (in my view) that had died back for the winter. I covered the newly bare patch with newspaper to smother remaining weeds and then used mulch left over from the spring. I’ll now leave it alone until next spring, by which time the newspaper and some of the mulch will have decomposed, adding nutrients to the soil.  This is what it looks like now:

What to plant instead of this awful "grass"?
This mulched-over patch of bad "grass" could easily grow

The question: what to plant there? This patch (which I could easily expand to between six and 10 feet long, by my guess) is on the steepest part of our sloping backyard and is a pain to mow. It runs into what we have called the iris bed, though this year I thinned out the irises. It is packed with daffodils in the spring and we have added other flowers for other seasons, though they aren’t yet as eyecatching as I would like. We can see that bed from the kitchen window and French doors to the deck, but we can’t see this newly mulched section. The slope faces north and anything planted there must contend with deer, groundhog and squirrels.

Do we go for some sort of groundcover or short plants? Shrubs that would obscure everything behind them? (Eventually we want to use the iris bed as one “wall” in a “room” that would be hidden from the house and deck, but that is a longer-term project.) Annuals in the spring and then reseed in the fall, when grass seedlings fare better because the soil is warm and they don’t have to compete with weeds for sun and space?

Offer your suggestions! And pass on any tips for eradicating mock strawberry!

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3 thoughts on “Garden dilemma

  1. We had a big hill in sparta and planted junipers which eventually spread out to cover the area. The deer and groundhogs seemed to leave them alone.

  2. You could use the juniper berries for cooking too. If it works in gin, just think of a juniper apple chutney. Or a plum jam with juniper berries. (Sloe gin on bread?)

    1. Except the photos I saw of juniper bushes reminded me of the shrubs I hated in my parents’ yard (though they might not be the same — I don’t remember berries). It could take me a long time to warm up to them.

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