What is the best alternative ground cover to grass for a backyard where kids play?

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What is an Alternative ground cover to grass for a yard that gets wet and shady where kids play ?

Hillary Fairbanks Published: Sept. 4, 2020, 10:55 a.m.Last updated: Sept. 23, 2020, 11:42 a.m.

Brooklyn, NY, small backyard.  Tried to cultivate grass for years but often dies.  Would love alternative ground cover. Ideally not waiting months for it to establish (young kids would love to be out there).  Considering clover, thyme, mint, fescue... Prefer plants over seeds...  Would love guidance.  Even finding a gardener with similar focus may be challenging but we are open.

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