Feather pads (cotula) - the easy-care lawn substitute

Feather pads (cotula) - the easy-care lawn substitute

Origin and characteristics of the plumage

Feather cushion is a very low cushion perennial that is very vigorous. Their home is the southern hemisphere. The plants reach a height of five to 15 centimeters, depending on the variety.

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Feather pads are not planted because of the inconspicuous yellow flowers that bloom from May to July. The perennial is valued above all for its delicate foliage. Most varieties have green leaves in summer that turn coppery to almost black in winter.

Not all varieties are perennial; hardy feather-cushion perennials should be selected for planting as lawn substitutes.

The best location for the ground cover

  • Sunny to partial shade
  • Not too humus rich
  • Permeable soil
  • Slightly humid location without waterlogging

Feather pads are planted as a substitute for lawns

The soil is prepared by removing weeds and soil compaction. Soils that are too rich in nutrients or firm should be loosened with sand.

The perennials are best planted in autumn or early spring. You need about 15 plants for one square meter of soil.

After insertion, the plumage pad is well watered. Weeds must be pulled regularly until the plants have spread.

Feather pad hardly needs any maintenance

Once the ground cover has grown, you hardly have any work to do with your replacement lawn. Above all, annoying mowing is no longer necessary.

Not all plumage varieties are hardy. In the case of sensitive varieties, cover the substitute lawn with brushwood in autumn to prevent the plants from freezing to death if the temperature is too low.

Unlike, for example, Roman chamomile as a substitute for lawn, feather padding is only partially step-resistant. The laying of stepping stones is recommended on areas that are frequently walked on.

Popular varieties

  • Cotula dioica “Minima” - summer green, winter copper-colored
  • Cotula hispida - silvery all year round
  • Cotula potentillina - summer green, winter copper-colored
  • Cotula squalida “Platt's Black” - reddish brown in summer, almost black in winter, only partially hardy

Tips & Tricks

When it is very dry, feather pads turn brown, as does lawn. The perennials recover very quickly as soon as they are watered.