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

Groundcovers for North Central Texas
May 27, 2014 - I have a very large area that is in Palo Pinto County, Texas. We tried to plant grass but it never established. I'm looking for a ground cover that does well in shade (lots of oak tees) and is semi d...
view the full question and answer

Flowering Shade Plant for California
February 21, 2016 - I have a house north facing that has a "flower bed" in front that unfortunately is shaded 100% of the time. There are roses in the bed currently (they came with the house) but they do poorly. We are...
view the full question and answer

Flowering groundcover for Indiana
May 25, 2009 - I live in southern Indiana and am looking for a nice flowering groundcover that will overcome the grass. It is on a hill that is very hard to mow.
view the full question and answer

Groundcover for rocky slope
February 27, 2012 - My house has a very steep and very rocky slope. We have no problems with erosion, its just very unnattractive. There is no way to mow it whatsoever, and we live in a planned community so we can't h...
view the full question and answer

Groundcover called Jumping Jacks
August 19, 2009 - My neighbor has a beautiful ground cover and she doesn't know the name and I have searched the nurseries and internet and can not find it. She says it spreads like crazy and when she was young they c...
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