Reasons to buy Dichondra repens
Dichondra repens (Sometimes called Kidney Weed due to its kidney shaped leaves) is an evergreen perennial Australian native that makes a popular ground cover and a wonderful lawn alternative. Best suited to areas with paths and pavers where it won’t be walked on very often. It spreads quite quickly, filling small gaps in gardens as well as growing well between informal stepping stones or anywhere a lawn would be difficult to access for mowing.
Virtually maintenance-free, Dichondra repens will need regular watering if in full sun or just kept moist if planted in lightly shaded areas. Well cultivated soils with a little added organic matter help it retain moisture.
More about Dichondra repens
People often buy Dichondra repens when looking for alternatives to traditional grass lawns. It will not take heavy foot traffic like grass does, so its best used with pavers, paths, stepping stones etc. It can also be grown in both gravel and rock gardens to bring some softness and greenery.
Once established, Kidney Weed/Dichondra will spread naturally by sending out runners, putting down a new root at every point a node touches the ground. It grows between 4-8 cm tall, with each plant spreading to a width of approximately 30 cm. So plant about 9 per square metre of space you want to fill.
Through Spring and Summer, Dichondra repens will produce some tiny, yellow/green flowers although they are so small as to be considered insignificant.
Dichondra repens is quite waterwise and also tends to be frost resistant. While it is sometimes seen growing in open fields or in forests or wherever there is some bare ground available, it does not compete well and so prefers being planted in weed-free soils that have been well cultivated. There are no diseases of note known to affect Dichondra repens.
When planted in areas of full sun, water deeply regularly, but allow it to dry out between watering.
If you have planted it as a lawn alternative you can actually mow it, 2 or 3 times a year to produce a more even cover. It will recover well so long as it is not cut too short. Check out our article on other groundcovers to use as a lawn alternative here.