Many homeowners want greenery whenever and wherever they can get it. That’s not usually a problem except where there is limited light, steep terrain or inadequate moisture. The best choice of plant material for such an area is ground cover.
Ground covers are generally any low growing plants (other than grass) that cover a large area. They can help reduce erosion, are tolerate of most insects/ diseases, and generally low maintenance, such as mowing, weeding, or feeding. They are a great choice in providing greenery and some color in otherwise difficult areas.
For Shade to partial Shade
Choose from liriope (various varieties of Liriope muscari), creeping lily turf (Liriope spicata), monkey grass (Ophiopogon japonicus), Asian jasmine (Trachelospermum asiaticum), cast iron plant (Aspidistra elatior), English ivy (Hedera helix), Algerian ivy (Hedera canariensis), periwinkle (Vinca major, an excellent variegated form is available), ajuga (Ajuga reptans, use in small areas, since it is prone to crown rot), strawberry begonia (Saxifraga stolonifera), many ferns such as holly fern (Cyrtomium falcatum), wood fern (Thelypteris kunthii), sword fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia) and autumn fern (Dryopteris erythrosora), to name a few.
For Partial Shade / Sun to Sun
Consider Lily-of-the-Nile (Agapanthus), sedum (Sedum acre, S. Album), low-growing junipers (Juniperus chinensis procumbens and J. horizontalis cultivars especially), dwarf lantanas, dwarf bamboo (Arundinaria pygmaea), daylily (Hemerocallis), wedelia (Wedelia trilobata, south Louisiana), perennial verbenas and yarrow (Achillea millefolium).
Using ground cover can offer a solution to a wide variety of limited landscapes.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture