A commercial facility is a busy place.
Even though the variety of commercial sites in Northeast Ohio is vast, all of them experience traffic. From employees or residents coming and going at an office park or condominium to customers at a retail facility or patients and visitors at a hospital popping in at all hours, foot and vehicle movement can be pretty hectic on a daily basis.
As such, the landscaping at these places has to keep up. It can’t be weak or wimpy or need extra special TLC or it won’t be able to hang. You know that. You have a long list of important things to do. You don’t have time to check on a tender plant every day
That’s why low maintenance plants are such important additions to commercial landscapes.
Not sure which plants provide some nice aesthetics to your landscape, while also being low maintenance? Here are 12 to consider.
Consider Placement Before Choosing Low Maintenance Plants
Plants are a key component to any landscape, commercial facilities included. Any landscape without lots of green and pops of color is pretty dull and dreary.
But there are three things you have to think about first when choosing low maintenance plants for commercial landscapes.
When you want to create an attractive commercial landscape, you want to have a mix of attractive annuals, perennials, grasses, and evergreens to provide variety, interest, and all-season appeal, including winter.
Obviously, some plants like certain conditions more than others. So after choosing a mixture of preferred plants, you have to place them together in locations that each plant can thrive in. For instance, you’d never put a sun-loving plant in a very shady area. It just wouldn’t bode well for that plant later in its life.
Always consider site location, sun exposure, soil condition, irrigation availability, and traffic when choosing low maintenance landscaping plants.
Thoughts on Safety and Security
Adding plants to a commercial landscape means also taking the safety and security of your property into account.
So plants that grow uncontrollably and could invasively cover windows or doors would be a maintenance nightmare. As a rule, the low maintenance plants you choose should never block windows, walkways, fire hydrants, or entrances and exits.
Don’t Forget About Winter Concerns
In Northeast Ohio, you always have to consider winter as a factor when choosing plants. And even low maintenance plants can be impacted by heavy snow and salt accumulation in the winter.
If you have spots where you tend to pile snow in the winter, you don’t want any key trees planted there. But some perennials, annuals, and ornamental grasses could be OK because they aren’t as impacted by snow.
The same could be said for salt. You want to choose hardy plants for areas where salt may be a concern. Adding burlap or snow fencing on parking lot edges to protect plants where you tend to apply quite a bit of salt could also help.
The Best Low Maintenance Plants in Ohio
Now that you have the important considerations on your property characteristics top of mind, choosing plants in each category is next. And it’s the fun part.
There are an awful lot of plants available though. To help you focus your choices on the best low maintenance plants for commercial landscapes, we’ve compiled a list of our favorites in two top low maintenance categories: perennials and ornamental grasses.
Perennials are favorites for commercial facilities because you only need to plant them once and then they bloom again and again year after year. This brings nice consistent color to your landscape.
Here are some of our favorite low maintenance plants in this category.
1. Black-eyed Susan
Want to bring a little sunshine to the mix even on cloudy days? This full-sun-loving perennial has brilliant yellow flowers with dark brown centers. It blooms from July to September, attracting butterflies and deterring deer.
A tall, fast-growing perennial, catmint brings blue bloom clusters to the scene from April through October. Hummingbirds and butterflies like them, and this plant can tolerate dry conditions quite well.
These purple, daisy-like flowers attract butterflies and enjoy full sun. They are also deer-resistant, mid-summer bloomers, which is helpful for commercial properties that have large deer populations nearby.
For daisy-shaped flowers in colors ranging from yellow to red to pink or even multi-colored, try coreopsis. They are loved by birds and butterflies and stand 1 to 3 feet tall.
Feel like adding a classic white bloom to the landscape? Daisies come in multiple varieties offering different heights for different locations and that provide blooms all summer and even into early autumn. They don’t like soggy soil, so plant them in well-drained locations.
Talk about a low maintenance plant that does it all: Daylilies bring good looks and are hardy to boot.
For those areas that are shadier, hosta is a great addition to the commercial landscape. Their foliage is the stand-out color you’re going for, ranging from yellows to greens to blues. Then, during the summer, they provide small pops of color in little bell-like flowers.
A hardy standby, sedums have beautiful, bold flowers that are drought resistant during those hot summer months.
Ornamental grasses are great low maintenance plants for commercial landscapes. They bring visual appeal with mound-like or vertical shapes, spiky or feathered textures, and multiple colors from green to blue to even red.
Here are our favorite low maintenance ornamental grasses.
9. Karl Foerster Reed Grass
Want a grass that likes full sun but can also thrive in partial shade? Try this reed grass that has beige seed heads that wave in the wind on top of vibrant green plumes. Highly tolerant of urban areas and high-traffic, they bring this character to the landscape from late summer to winter.
10. Maiden Grass
Used as a vertical accent plant, a mass planting or a hedge, maiden grass has silverish seed heads that rise at the tops of grasses from early fall into winter. The foliage turns yellow in the fall with brick red stems.
Lavender flower spikes shine on the glossy green and white variegated grassy leaves of liriope. As one of the best low maintenance landscaping plants, it stands 12 inches tall and doesn’t mind a little bit of moist conditions.
12. Dwarf Fountain Grass
Need a grass for a smaller landscape bed? Try this fine-textured grass that adds a bright green foliage that turns golden in autumn. The blooms appear as white bottlebrush tops.
You Have a Lot of Plant Options
There are so many good choices when it comes to low maintenance plants for commercial landscapes.
Choosing the right ones can seem challenging. You don’t want to pick the wrong one or waste time and money adding to your maintenance costs.
We completely understand. Understanding the various environmental conditions on your property and trying to match the right low maintenance plants to those places is not always easy. And you just want your property to look nice all the time, improving your brand and keeping your headaches at a minimum.
Turfscape can help. We live and breathe plants every day. We can help you make the right choices so you can get the look you want at the budget you need. We can let you know which plants are truly low maintenance and how they can best work in your landscape.
Want to learn more about how to choose the best low maintenance plants for your Northeast Ohio commercial property? Get started today with a free quote. We’ll review your options together so you can make a great choice.
Image Sources: Black Eyed Susan, Catmint, Coneflower, Coreopsis, Daisies, Daylilies, Karl Foerster Reed Grass, Maiden Grass, Liriope, Dwarf Fountain Grass