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Using Creeping Charlie (Glechoma hederacea) as a ground cover in gardens  RSS feed

 
Aaron McKinley
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Has anybody successfully done this? If I can't beat I might as well use it, to my advantage.  So a patch of CC and say tomatoes growing out of it.  Living mulch.

I am trying to find an living mulch.  Currently I use the 4 to 5 inch wood chip method but finding wood chips for free and on the scale can be challenging.

Creeping Charlie might work?

 
Ellie Strand
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Location: Eau Claire, WI
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I love Charlie for exactly that reason. The only downside is it tends to get into the middle of plantings where you don't necessarily want it. It will out compete some delicate flora, but I don't let that bother me. If a plant can't stand up for itself it needs a different gardener.
 
Aaron McKinley
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So what plants do well, living with Charlie? What has worked in the past?
I feel that it is a strong plant and might inhibit grow of some plants. Maybe not.

Thanks for the answer.

 
duane hennon
gardener
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Location: western pennsylvania zone 5/a
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I like creeping charlie as a ground cover
1. it spreads by itself to cover bare ground
2. it has a long flower period and is liked by bumblebees
3. it can be somewhat pushy but can be easily controlled by chop and drop
   (or yank and drop, depending on your frustration level)
4. I have it growing under  the blueberries and raspberries, asparagus,
5 I don't do much annual gardening but my tomatoes and peppers at stuck
  into other planting where creeping resides
 
Ellie Strand
Posts: 27
Location: Eau Claire, WI
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CC will get into any clumping or spreading plant. The most problems are with decorative stuff like hostas, stonecrop sedum, Siberian iris. They totally choked out lillies of the valley.
 
Larisa Walk
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Location: South of Winona, Minnesota
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I LOVE CC - we call it ground ivy. It's great in the annual veggie garden pathways. It will creep into the beds but can be yanked back or left to sprawl as desired, depending on the crop, and mowed if it's too tall. Much easier to work with than white Dutch clover whose creeping roots are way more tenacious. It's a great ground cover in the raspberry and asparagus patches. You can move clumps into new areas as it transplants very readily. Really pretty too with a bunch of dandelions in flower.
 
John Duffy
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Creeping Charlie eats rhubarb plants
 
chip sanft
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Location: 18 acres & heart in zone 4 (central MN). Current abode: Knoxville (zone 6 /7)
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I don't much like the creeping charlie but no longer actively dislike it. That's the combined influence of permaculture, laziness, and experience. (Kind of like life.)

In our garden, we've had success growing okra, kale, winter squash, luffa, and tomatoes in areas infested by creeping c. Daikon doesn't mind it, either. Once the plants I want have their heads above creeping c level, I don't pay it much mind and only pull it when I feel like it. It definitely does creep, though...
 
duane hennon
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Location: western pennsylvania zone 5/a
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some ground cover frustration from last year
https://permies.com/t/58254/chop-drop-turns-overtop-flop

ground cover or "living mulch" also help capture nutrients in the early spring that would be lost
before your vegetables are planted or your shrubs and trees wake up

nature supplies an endless source of ground cover
their "prime directive" is to grow as much as they can, everywhere they can
if one is happy with this, then finding a suitable groundcover is easy and may happen by itself


the problem arises when one asks ground cover to do something else
"I want it to grow well in my area
I want it to say in the bed
I want it to leave my ____ alone
I want it to have flowers
I want it to be edible
I don't want it to be poisonous or allergenic
etc"

now the list shrinks considerably
and the person is left with a compromised choice
and more importantly
constraining the plant's "prime directive"

but overall, I see them as a positive
 
Aaron McKinley
Posts: 31
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Thanks for all the ideas.

So CC can be used for:

okra, kale, winter squash, luffa, and tomatoes
raspberry and asparagus patches


but not so much for these plants:

delicate flora
hostas, stonecrop sedum, Siberian iris
rhubarb
 
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