When considering methods of erosion control for any type of land surface, one must also consider using ground cover plants to complement conventional methods like fiber rolls, gabions, and erosion control blankets. Most hillsides and slopes can especially be made much more stable with ground cover plants. In fact, a properly planted and anchored variety of these plants can stop almost all erosion and hillside movement in a landscape.
Plant variety is a necessary and important factor in establishing an erosion control system with ground cover plants because a varied planting is more effective by far than a monoculture on the landscape. The reason for this is that the plant variety offers several layers of vegetation that rain and windfall will hit, thereby minimizing their force when hitting the ground. The deeper and varied root systems also help to anchor the entire landscape reducing the effects of those factors.
Several plant species that are especially suited for ground cover include:
- Thyme – The thymus species is especially good in drought prone areas and landscapes that are subject to little rainfall as they are incredibly drought tolerant. As an added incentive, these plants are edible and have a variety of health benefits. These are also typically used in cooking and as an additive to salads.
- Chamomile – While the common flowering kinds can also be used, a special non-flowering variant called ‘Treneague’ is especially good at ground cover because it remains compact and spreads slowly throughout the landscape. It thrives best in a sunny climate.
- Liriope graminfolia – This is a 30-centimeter tall evergreen perennial. It takes a little while to spread but eventually fans out into a superiorly dense cover in a shady position. This particular plant is also drought tolerant.
- Golden Saxifrage – This particular perennial thrives well in wet woodlands and bog gardens. It creeps rather well and has all the attributes of being a good ground cover. It grows to about 30 centimeters tall.
- Asarum canadense – This is a low-growing herbaceous species that grows well as a companion to garden shrubs. It thrives in woodland areas and requires a humus-rich soil.
To make sure that these plants survive in the landscape where the erosion control system is to be setup, an erosion control blanket like the QuickGRASS Pro needs to be used. From the American Excelsior Company, the makers of the original Curlex® brand of erosion control blankets, this special product enhances grass seed germination by providing superb water retention, and it also protects the seedlings from birds and the sun’s dying heat. Using QuickGRASS Pro will ensure that the investment put into creating a viable erosion control system complimented by ground cover plants will not go to waste.