When you feel like tossing a rug over your yard and calling it good, count on groundcover plants. Such plants are an alternative lawn (especially in shaded areas), they fill spaces between flagstone or pavers, control erosion and create a “living mulch” that cools the ground and suppresses weed growth. Today we are sharing the best flowering groundcovers that are sure to compliment any outdoor space and make it sparkle.
- Bigroot Geranium (Geranium macrorrhizum). The plant barely grows up to 1-1.5 feet tall and loves the sun, it’s drought tolerant. Blooms appear when the weather warms up in colors like pink, red or pale pink with interesting variegated foliage.
- Spotted Dead Nettle (Lamium maculatum). This low growing plant can be grown diversely in different climates (USDA Zones 3-10), providing it cool, moist soil and shade to part shade. Dead nettle is notable for both its variegated foliage and its dense clusters of flowers, which appear in a variety of colors, including white, pink and purple.
- Moss Rose (Portulaca). It is very tolerant of poor conditions and dry soil. This pretty little plant with needle-like foliage and tiny colorful flowers looks absolutely stunning. The blooms come in yellow, pink, red, white, orange and many more colors.
- Helianthemum. Providing a well-drained soil and full sun (part shade in warmer climates) it blooms happily. The showy flowers of this genus come in shades of orange, pink, yellow, scarlet, and white.
- Lilyturf (Liriope). It requires full sun in colder regions but in warm subtropical or tropical climate, you can grow it in dappled shade. This showy and tough groundcover has lush and deep green, grass-like foliage ordered in slightly upright tufts. Spikes of violet or lavender color flowers appear from late summer until the fall.
- Sweet Woodruff. It is an excellent ground cover if you want to add fragrance to your garden. Grows best in part shade to full shade and on well-drained soil, this plant can grow up to a height of only 8-10 inches. It starts to bloom prolifically from mid-spring, sweet woodruff leaves also release fragrance when crushed.
- Creeping Thyme. It is a low-growing aromatic flowering herb that is perennial and hardy in USDA Zones 4-9. Just like other thyme varieties it is edible too. It is deer resistant and an amazing alternative of grasses.
- Brass Button. It can become your alternative to lawn grass, and it also forms yellow-golden flowers that appear from spring to summer. Brass buttons are hardy in USDA Zones 5-10 (but evergreen only in Zone 8-10), growing in temperates to subtropical climates both.
- Creeping Phlox. This ground cover has pleasant flowers that appear in pastel hues. Growing this sturdy, low-maintenance plant is possible in USDA Zones 3-8, it is the plant that can be used in landscaping to hide the unsightly slope or other difficult areas as it rambles between rocks or cascades down.
- Sedum. The genus ‘Sedum’ has a diverse group of ornamental succulent plants, you can grow low growing sedums as a ground cover in full sun and well-drained soil. Yellow flowers appear in summer.
- Campanula Portenschlagiana (‘Dalmatian Bellflower’) forms a mat of small rounded leaves. The flowers are star-shaped, blue-purple in color and bloom from spring through summer. Relatively cold hardy but requires shelter when temperature dips below much. It grows in full sun and in the part shade too, on a fairly loose, well-drained and alkaline soil.
- Lily of the Valley. Its fragrant little bell-shaped white flowers grow well in shade and have long blooming period. Growing lily of the valley plant is possible in cool temperate zones in USDA Zones 2-9.
- Vinca minor. One of the most popular groundcovers, it is a hardy plant in both cold and warm climates under USDA Zones 4-10a that spreads quickly. It blooms prolifically, is easy to grow and tolerates poor soil and drought. Provide it full sun in the cold climate and part shade in warm climates.
- Veronica ‘Goodness Grows’. This low growing beautiful perennial blooms from summer to fall.. With its spiky blue blooms, it looks good with bright green foliage. Veronica ‘Goodness Grows’ requires full sun and regular but moderate watering.
- Firecracker (Russelia equisetiformis). A warm climate plant that grows best in warm temperates, subtropics, and tropics (USDA Zones 8b-11). Fluffy, errant and wispy stems and foliage cascade down and camouflages the unsightly areas. It is suitable for slopes, borders, retaining walls and containers too.
- Lamb’s Ear. It has thick attractive silver-grey-green foliage that forms gentle and velvety rosettes, not only the foliage, its purple colored flowers that appear from late spring are appealing too. This excellent edging plant only grows up 12 inches tall in part sun to full sun under USDA Zones 4-9.
- Society Garlic (Tulbaghia violacea). With its edible garlic-flavored purple flowers and clump forming grass like blue-grey foliage, this tough and low maintenance ground cover is a good option for those who live in warmer climates. Suitable for warm temperates, subtropics and tropics under USDA Zones 7-11.
- Ajuga (‘Bugleweed’) has attractive foliage that forms a dense carpet-like mat and deep blue flower spikes. It is possible to grow ajuga in both cold and warm climates (USDA Zones, 3-10).