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Description

Silver carpet is a ground-hugging perennial, growing 1-3 in. high and slowly spreading several feet wide. Its silvery foliage is comprised of narrow leaves that are pale green above and silvery-white below. Small yellow daisy-like flowers grow to 1 in. across and provide modest accent character in spring and summer.

Native to South Africa, silver carpet has been introduced into California gardens as a ground cover for use in small spaces, between paving stones and for rock garden situations. In some instances it has been planted as a lawn or pathway plant where it is able to withstand light foot traffic. Its low profile and relatively slow growth rate make it easily susceptible to invasive weeds when used in large areas. It tolerates full sun and heat, and is adapted to low amounts of supplemental water during summer. It is sensitive to frost and can be killed by temperatures below 28°F. It is a very small plant that can be encouraged to grow faster and obtain greater coverage by providing additional water. Its best performance is in well-drained soils.

Water Needs

Silver carpet can grow well in Inland Empire gardens in areas of full sun and with normal rainfall and low amounts of summer water. The chart shown below provides a recommended baseline guide to the monthly irrigation schedule and volume of supplemental water needed to maintain healthy growth throughout the average year. It should be noted there are several months marked by an asterisk (*) when winter rains can provide sufficient moisture and irrigation is not needed. The high and low range of moisture indicates it can grow with varying amounts of water and you should make irrigation adjustments based on field observations of growth and character. When grown as a lawn substitute, the higher end of this moisture range can help maintain more robust growth and character.

Irrigation Schedule and Graph

Low Water Use Plants

Irrigation Schedule 2

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
Runs per Month 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x
Inches per Run 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1"
 
Inches per Month 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2"

Range of supplemental summer water: 7"-14"
Range of supplemental winter water: 0"-10"

 
0"-2"
0"-2"
0"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
0"-2"
0"-2"
  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
For more information on how to use this Irrigation Schedule and Graph, follow this link.

For information how to calculate your irrigation system’s schedule and precipitation rate, please follow this link.

Plant Properties

Plant Type: Ground cover, Perennial
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Spreading
Growth Rate: Slow
Height: 1 in. - 3 in.
Width: 1 ft. - 2 ft.
Water Needs: Low 2
Foliage Color: Pale green, Blue green, Olive green
Flower Color: Yellow
Flower Season: Summer
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil
Exposure Adaptations: Heat, All day sun
Function: Rock gardens, Borders

Maintenance

Usually it is not possible to maintain Dymondia for long as a large area groundcover because it does not compete strongly with weeds (D). To encourage a vigorous tightly matting form, fertilize annually with a low potency all-purpose organic fertilizer between late winter and early spring. Root offsets can be replanted in late winter or early spring either elsewhere in the garden or in pots for future use (18).

References

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