Need Ideas For Foundation Planting

Filed Under: Shrubs, Landscaping, Planting, Design, Landscaping Projects · Keywords: Garden, Gardening, Hi, About, Planting, Shrubs, Plants, My, Maintenance, Water, Landscaping, Drainage, There, Grass, Mulch, Termites · 1341 Views
I am an amateur in gardening and know nothing about what I should be planting. I am looking to plant foundation shrubs or plants in the front and side of my house next to the house but I need it to be very low maintenance and inexpensive. We also don't want too much because we need to keep it so that the water can drain well because we've had water in our basement before and we were told part of the reason was because of landscaping bricks we had an not enough drainage. I was thinking about simple, attractive shrubs/bushes so that there is some curb appeal. I'm also not sure if I should just plant grass then around it or use mulch, although I've been told mulch is a bad idea cuz they attract termites. Suggestions please? Thank you!

Rate It 2

Additional comments about this question: · Gardenality Genius · Zone 8A · 10° to 15° F
What type of sun exposure does this area of the foundation receive; full sun, morning sun w/afternoon shade, morning shade w/afternoon sun? How tall and wide do you want the plants to grow? Is the soil in this area well-drained? Knowing this will help me to provide you with some good low-maintenance plant selections.

Regarding the termites, it's a myth that shredded mulches attract these insects. I have used shredded wood mulch around my home for many many years and have never found termites eating it. If they did, it wouldn't be long and they would eat all the mulch! This has never happened. If you live in a region where there are termites they are everywhere, anyway, and are most attracted to buried wood, stumps, or the wood in the frame of your home. For example, in the state of Georgia, there are an average of 8 to 12 termite colonies per acre...and this is why we MUST treat our homes. Even if mulch did attract termites it wouldn't matter as long as your home was protected.

7 years ago ·
1 Green Thumbs Up
· Unthumb

Christy Shimmin

Christy Shimmin · Gardenality Seed · Zone 6A · -10° to -5° F
Thanks, Brent! It is mostly shady there as we have big trees there. We may get a little sun but not much. I would really prefer no taller than 2-3 feet and width probably isn't a big concern. As far as the soil,drainage, we pulled up some landscaping bricks because it was causing the area to retain too much water and we would get a little water in our basement. I'm also going to slope the ground slightly with dirt so it will be able to drain down. Hope that helps!

7 years ago ·
0 Green Thumbs Up

Comment about this question »

2 Answers

Answer #2 ·'s Answer · Okay, Christy. So, the area is mostly shaded, the soil should be well-drained since you have corrected a drainage problem, you want plants that grow between 3 feet in height or under, and you're in zone 6a. You want simple and low-maintenance. The one's with an asterisk (*) are the most low maintenance. Here's some plant suggestions.

Evergreen Shrubs:

Autumn Cheer Encore Azalea
*Green Velvet Boxwood
*Soft Touch Holly
*Winter Gem Boxwood
*Harbour Dwarf or other Dwarf Nandina
*Creeping Yew
Forever And Ever Hydrangea


Hosta Lily
*Autumn Fern (evergreen) and other perennial ferns
Heuchera (many varieties)
Helleborus (Lenten Rose)
Toad Lily


*Liriope (non-spreading types such as 'Big Blue')
*Mondo Grass (dwarf or regular)
Vinca Minor (perennial periwinkle) - requires minor edging when in confined spaces
Creeping Jenny - requires minor edging when in confined spaces

After planting you can use a 1 to 2 inch layer of a shredded wood mulch around the plants. If you plant a groundcover such as the Creeping Jenny or Vinca Minor this would eventually eliminate the need for mulch as these low-growing plants will fill the space, without climbing all over shrubs. I would not suggest growing grass between shrubs you plant. Grass is for the lawn and plants and mulch are for landscape beds. You always want your garden and landscape beds to be defined from your lawn areas.

Hope these suggestions helped. Let me know if you have any further questions.

Additional comments about this answer:

Christy Shimmin

Christy Shimmin · Gardenality Seed · Zone 6A · -10° to -5° F
Great! Thank you so much! I will definitely check these out and love the "low maintenance" ones!

7 years ago ·
0 Green Thumbs Up

Comment about this answer »
Rate It 3

Answer #1 · Maggie's Answer · We've used rose glow barberry which is really low maintenace. They basically get rain water or early morning watering if it's been dry, and once a year my husband trims them back. That's it & it's not expensive & has nice color.)

Additional comments about this answer:

Christy Shimmin

Christy Shimmin · Gardenality Seed · Zone 6A · -10° to -5° F
Thanks, Maggie! I'll check that out. Low maintenance is what I'm after ;)

7 years ago ·
0 Green Thumbs Up

Comment about this answer »
Rate It 2

Post An Answer To This Question:

Can't find your answer? Click here to ask your question.

Read Tips On How To Give A Great Answer

Click here to learn how to give a great answer »
Sponsor Ad:


View All My Gardenaltiy Updates »