12 Ground Cover Plants to Grow in Massachusetts

A ground cover is a plant that grows in the soil and covers the ground. It can be used as a decorative plant to keep weeds from growing. Some of these plants will require little care, and others need to be watered frequently, but all of them will provide great value and beauty to your home. Here are some of the best ground cover plants for Massachusetts:

1. Apple Moss

Apple moss is an excellent ground cover plant for Massachusetts. It is a low-maintenance plant that will grow in most soils. Apple moss grows in clumps and spreads out as it reaches maturity, making it an ideal choice for a small garden or cottage garden. It can reach up to 2 feet tall and wide and can be planted in groups or as individual plants.

Apple moss grows best in full sun locations but will tolerate partial shade conditions if you give it plenty of water during dry periods. The best time to plant apple moss is early spring, when the soil has warmed up enough from winter to support root growth.

Be sure to prepare your soil before planting apple moss by adding several inches of composted manure or compost mixed into the top 6 inches of soil before planting. This helps improve drainage while also providing nutrients for your new plantings.

2. Creeping Phlox

Creeping phlox is an excellent choice for a low-maintenance ground cover and can be planted in the spring or fall. The vibrant, colorful blooms are beautiful in the garden, and the plant will spread slowly to form a dense cover under trees and shrubs.

Creeping phlox grows 4 feet tall and 3 feet wide, and has trailing stems that trail over rocks, logs or other objects. The flowers are large and showy, but their color is a bit lighter pink than the flowering plants. Creeping phlox prefers moist soil with good drainage and full sun to partial shade.

Creeping phlox is hardy to Zone 5 but will not tolerate frost if planted too early or late in summer. In hot climates it may need extra water during dry periods; use drip irrigation or overhead sprinklers for best results.

3. Corsican Mint

Corsican mint is an excellent choice for a low-maintenance perennial border. The leaves are small and nondescript, but they are effortless to grow and will return yearly. It does not require much water but does need some soil amendment. It does tend to spread, so it will need to be divided every couple of years.

Corsican Mint is excellent for adding color and texture to your garden, but it also attracts many beneficial insects like bees and butterflies. In addition, Corsican mint can be used for cooking or to make herbal tea. It is also a good source of vitamins A and C, potassium, iron and calcium.

4. Vinca minor

Vinca minor is a low-growing perennial with deep green leaves and purple flowers that bloom in the early spring. The plant grows to a maximum height of 3 feet but only needs to be planted 6 inches deep in most cases.

The Vinca minor vine can be used as an evergreen ground cover or potted on a patio table, where it will add a touch of color and texture while also making your home more inviting. The plant requires little maintenance and can even be left alone for up to 8 months without dying back, making it ideal for planting in large containers or areas that get little sunlight throughout the year.

5. Carpet Bugleweed

Carpet Bugleweed is a low-growing ground cover plant used in gardens, as a ground cover, and in wildflower meadows. It grows up to a height of 14 inches and spreads out to form a carpet-like mat. Carpet bugleweed is easy to grow in Massachusetts and can grow in open areas near streams and rivers or even along roadsides.

Carpet bugleweed prefers total sun exposure but will tolerate partial shade as well. It can be planted directly into the ground or grown in containers that you can move around the garden area. In addition, carpet bugleweed will tolerate wet and poor soil conditions once established in your yard or garden area.

6. Sedum Acre

Sedum acre is a low-growing ground cover with succulent leaves and rosettes of bright green, fleshy foliage. It grows in light shade and full sun but prefers well-drained soil and can tolerate poor soil with a little extra water.

Sedum acre will grow up to 3 feet tall if you provide enough space to spread out. You can also remove any dead plants from the center of the patch as soon as they start to die back during the growing season. This helps prevent disease and makes for an even healthier plant in the spring.

7. Corsican Hellebore

Corsican hellebore is a perennial herb that grows to about 3 feet tall, with a sizeable yellow-white flower with long and bright green leaves. Corsican hellebore likes moist soil and will grow best when planted in shade or partial shade, though it will tolerate full sun once established. It needs little watering once established but should be kept watered regularly during dry spells.

8. Sweet Woodruff

Sweet woodruff is a low-growing perennial with finely divided leaves and white flowers. It grows 4 to 6 inches tall and has branching stems that give it a more upright appearance than most ground covers. Sweet woodruff can grow in dry conditions in USDA Hardiness Zones 5 to 9, but it’s drought tolerant once established.

Sweet woodruff grows best in full sun but can tolerate partial shade. The plant does best when its soil is moist, so water regularly during the spring and summer. Remove dead leaves from the base of this plant in spring and fall to encourage new growth from below. If you want to spread sweet woodruff on a lawn area or garden bed, mow it down about 1 inch above ground level to encourage new growth from below.

9. Golden Creeping Jenny

Golden creeping jenny is a low-growing, spreading herbaceous perennial with evergreen foliage that grows to about 4 inches tall. The leaves are covered in fine hair and have a golden color. Golden creeping jenny flowers are yellow, appearing from spring to early summer.

Golden creeping jenny can spread by self-seeding, so it may be necessary to divide the plant after it has spread beyond its bounds. Golden creeping jenny does well in full sun to partial shade and prefers moist soil rich in organic matter.

11. Yarrow

Yarrow is a perennial that grows as high as 4 feet and has small, fragrant white flowers. It grows in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 9 and can tolerate partial shade.

The plant’s foliage is a soft green, and the flowers are fragrant, with an almost minty scent. Yarrow is an excellent addition to flower beds, which can be planted in groups or as a single plant. Yarrow can grow to be up to four feet in height and width when mature, but they will spread only slightly as it matures.

Yarrow is an attractive addition to a rock garden or naturalized meadows along roadsides and at the edge of forests. It prefers moist, well-drained soil with total sun exposure, but it will tolerate light shade if the soil is rich enough to retain moisture throughout the day.

12. Lavender

Lavender is one of the most popular garden plants because it’s hardy and easy to grow. You can find lavenders in many colors, including purple, blue, white and pink. Lavender prefers full sun to partial shade, but it can tolerate some shade if you’re in an area where it gets hot in the summertime. Because of its ease of care, lavender is one of the best plants for beginners to try growing.

Factors to consider when choosing ground cover plants to grow in Massachusetts

Germination Rate

The fastest growing plants tend to be hardy, easy to grow and have a high germination rate. This is key in determining which ground cover plants will do well in your area. You want to choose the plant with the highest germination rate so you can start it quickly.

Plant Size

Another critical factor to consider when choosing ground cover plants is their size. Smaller plants may be more appropriate for your yard if you have small space or limited drainage. However, larger plants may be better suited for your garden if you have plenty of room and good drainage.

Ability to grow in Massachusetts weather conditions

When choosing ground cover plants, you need to consider the climate where you live. Choose plants that can withstand freezing temperatures and snow if you’re in a cold environment. If you’re in a temperate climate (like Massachusetts), choose plants that can tolerate hot summers and winters.

The best way to find out what kind of climate you have is to check the USDA plant hardiness zone map. This information will help you determine the type of plants most suitable for your area.

Fertilizer Requirements

The amount of fertilizer needed varies depending on the plant type and soil it grows in. For example, some plants are heavy feeders while others are light feeders. Some prefer organic fertilizers while others prefer inorganic fertilizers; some grow best when given specific types of fertilizer such as liquid or granular fertilizers, organic fertilizers and so forth.

Plant Needs

It’s also important to consider your ground cover needs before buying them. For example, if you want to grow ground-cover vegetables such as strawberries or delphiniums, they need lots of water and nutrients to thrive in your garden. However, if you want them to stay short enough that they do not shade other plants in your yard, they might not be suitable for you after all.

Planting Location

Plant your ground cover plants in areas with full sun to partial shade. Avoid placing them where they will be shaded, such as near trees and shrubs. If you have a site that gets great morning sun but then becomes shaded in the afternoon, you can plant a ground cover that tolerates shade.

If you have a sunny spot but your soil is clay, consider planting ground covers with a fast-growing root system or those that can tolerate waterlogged soil. These plants will hold their own against even the most challenging conditions.

Soil Requirements

The soil needs to be well-drained to quickly drain water and nutrients from the plant root zone. The soil should also be not too sandy and not too clayey, as these soil types will inhibit root growth. If your yard is mostly clay and you need to plant trees with shallow roots, consider planting them in containers instead.

Soil pH Requirements

The ideal pH for growing plants is 6.0 to 7.5. This is because the roots of most plants prefer acidic soils. However, if you live in a very hot climate, you can increase the pH by adding some lime (calcium) to your soil before planting seeds or seedlings.

Water Requirements

Most ground cover plants need to be watered once or twice a week, depending on your climate and the plant type. You can do this with a hose or sprinkler system or by using a soaker hose around the base of each plant. You will also want to ensure that you provide adequate drainage for these plants and keep them away from areas where they could become waterlogged.

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