The Q&A Archives: Ground covering

Question: I have a ground covering in the font of my house. It grows about 10 inches, burns from the sun and has a stem of small white flowers. I recently brought the house but the covering comes every year. I think it is great and would like to have a section of the same covering in my backyard. I took some leaves to the nursery and was told it was snow on the mountains. well all the pictures that I see of snow on the mountains is nothing like what I have in the yard. I am Syracuse, NY and was wondering what you would suggest as a ground covering.

Answer: If it's a shady area, your plant might be Anemone nemorosa 'pleniflora', pachysandra or sweet woodruff. Sweet woodruff (Galium odoratum) grows 6 to 8 inches tall and has whorls of bright green leaves around creeping stems. Small white flowers appear in late spring. It prefers moist soil. Japanese spurge (Pachysandra terminalis) grows 8 to 10 inches tall and has glossy green, semi-evergreen foliage and white flowers in spring. Anemone nemorosa has small deep green leaves and star-shaped white flowers. Snow on the Mountains (Aegopodium) is also called Bishop's Weed or Gout Weed. It grows best in full sun so I'm not convinced that's what you have (you said the leaves burn in the sun). If you really like the groundcover, you can dig up a shovelful (roots and all) and transplant it into your backyard. Groundcovers typically spread rather quickly....

Best wishes with your new landscape!

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