A recent Facebook post by Birmingham Garden Designer Troy Rhone, is one of the best ideas I have seen lately to make a boring gravel area look cool. With his permission, I am sharing it with you. This courtyard space has recently been installed. If you study the image you can see many great ideas, but what struck me was his unique use of mondo in the graveled area. I think the design using a single row of dwarf mondo (sometimes called Dwarf Lily Turf), as Troy says, “It relieves the boredom of this gravel space.” Will it grow? My guess is that it will do fine. This is a tough plant as long as it is kept watered.
Here is a tip: I have found to get the best results with dwarf mondo, plant small pots of it (they are about $2.00 each that are not root bound). To check to make sure the mondo you purchase are not root bound, turn the pot upside down and tap the pot to release the plant. If the roots are dense and you can hardly see any soil, that means it is root bound. Don’t buy it. Once you create your pattern, make sure the soil the dwarf mondo is planted in is friable, drains, and contains good organic matter. Once the planting is established, don’t worry, as it can take minimal traffic without damaging the plants. So, for most of us who don’t heavily use our outdoor spaces, this is a great idea.