I am writing this to help anyone out there who has been frustrated by the spread of clover and other weeds into your yard from an adjacent property. I have this situation because the rental next door has a lawn filled with clover and other various weeds. I am happy to blog that I solved the creep of clover about 4 years ago when I dug up Liriope (Monkey Grass) that had overtaken beds in other peoples’ yards. Here in zone 7 it can be invasive if not kept in check by using your shovel and cutting a trench along the row of Liriope and pulling out the runners.
I started out with a few wheelbarrows full of Liriope that I divided into small clumps and went from the back of my property to the front along my property line which is about 170 feet or so. It only took a year before the line filled out and I had a nice row of green all year and by the second year it was thick enough where I was dividing it and giving it away to others.
You have to be careful when planting something you know can be invasive because it means that you will have to spend time cutting, pruning, or digging to keep the plants from taking over an area. Liriope can be a great asset in the yard because it can grow in any soil, sun or shade, and it doesn’t care if it is dry or wet. If you have a problem area or weed creep, then I would think about putting in a barrier of Liriope.
Now as you look at the picture, my neighbor’s yard is on the left and you will see a line of bare soil which came from spraying weed killer a couple years ago. The clover got so bad when the neighbors did not mow that it was trying to creep over the Liriope so I took matters in my own hands and sprayed (when no one was looking LOL). Sometimes you just have to do what is best for you and your home/lawn and do it.
I do have to spend about once a month cutting and pulling out runners in the bed but I would rather do that than cuss every day watching as weeds take over my lawn. Liriope can be a very useful plant in keeping out the creeping weeds.
If you plan on using Liriope, look on Craiglist for people giving it away if you come dig it up or for a nominal fee. Otherwise the big box stores such as Lowe’s and Home Depot sell it in #8 or gallon containers which can easily be chopped up to give you 3-4 plants per pot. To easily space off how many you need I would just put one every foot if you live in zone 7 (use your foot and let that be the guide) and about 6″ if you live in zones 6 and below where your growing season is shorter.