En Español

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - September 21, 2009

From: Chevy Chase, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Groundcovers
Title: Groundcover for Maryland to replace English ivy
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

What is a suitable ground cover native replacement for english ivy? Native to Maryland.

ANSWER:

Hooray for you for replacing your English ivy (Hedera helix)!  Here are several possible alternatives.  Since I don't know your growing conditions (e.g., available sunlight, moisture, etc.) you will need to read the "Growing Conditions" for each plant to be sure that they match your site.

Shrubs:

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick) evergreen

Empetrum nigrum (black crowberry) evergreen

Cornus canadensis (bunchberry dogwood)

Mitchella repens (partridgeberry) evergreen

Gaultheria procumbens (eastern teaberry) evergreen

Perennial herbs:

Asarum canadense (Canadian wildginger)

Phlox divaricata (wild blue phlox) evergreen

Pachysandra procumbens (Allegheny-spurge) semi-evergreen

Chrysogonum virginianum (green and gold) semi-evergreen

Ferns:

Adiantum pedatum (northern maidenhair)

Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern) evergreen

Grasses/sedges:

Chasmanthium latifolium (Inland sea oats)

Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)

Carex texensis (Texas sedge) evergreen

You can look through our Maryland Recommended list for other possibilities.


Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Empetrum nigrum

Cornus canadensis

Mitchella repens

Gaultheria procumbens

Asarum canadense

Phlox divaricata

Pachysandra procumbens

Chrysogonum virginianum

Adiantum pedatum

Polystichum acrostichoides

Chasmanthium latifolium

Carex pensylvanica

Carex texensis

 

 

 

More Groundcovers Questions

Prairie wattle for woodland area in Austin
November 29, 2009 - Can prairie wattle be grown in a woodland area? It would get part shade, with full sun for at least half a day. The soil is a bit rocky; location is Austin.
view the full question and answer

Starting over on a lawn in Heath TX
April 02, 2013 - Unless one counts dichondra as grass I have more weeds than grass in my yard.I have hand pulled the weeds and used an organic program without success. The soil is a hard clay typical of North Texas. I...
view the full question and answer

Mystery Ground Cover in WI
July 11, 2011 - I am trying to identify a ground cover plant that has started growing in my yard (I'm in central Wisconsin). It is very short, only about 1-2 inches tall and is very thick covering the ground. It h...
view the full question and answer

Low maintenance ground cover for pool area in Corona CA
March 28, 2009 - Hi, I have this slope in my backyard that goes up to the neighbors yard. I'm looking for a low maintenance ground cover type plant that will stop erosion and won't cause a mess for my pool which is...
view the full question and answer

Will Habiturf thrive in Houston?
July 31, 2012 - Will Habiturf grow in partial sun? My lawn is surrounded by trees so that there is only about an hour each day with direct overhead sun. The rest of the day there is a light shade.
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center