Ground cover is like a gift to the over-stretched gardener. Not only are these brilliant plants perfect for adding blocks of colour to your borders, but they can also be deployed to tackle an array of garden problems.

Gardens suffering at the hands of erosion, plots perched on a hill-side, and even drought-prone patches can all benefit from the assistance of super-hardworking ground cover plants.

These tough little growers tend to be pretty hardy and some can even tolerate being walked upon. There are evergreen and flowering varieties so there is plenty out there to choose from.

Today, we’re looking at our top five ground cover beauties.


Thyme

Not only can you use thyme in your stews and casseroles, but it also makes a top contender for gardens prone to drought conditions. You can grow this tough cookie in your borders, in your beds, in a container, and even nestled into a rock garden. It’s fragrant and can be used in cooking - fresh and dried. There are even creeping varieties of thyme that can be used in pathways.


Campanula

If you fancy a bit of flowering ground cover, look no further than the gorgeous campanula. This plant produces blue and purple bell-shaped flowers that bloom from June until the first tendrils of Autumn in late September.


Phlox

Phlox subulata in particular is brilliant if you’re looking to cover larger areas. This evergreen plant will creep further and further, year after year and produces cute little flowers in a variety of colours from late spring to early summer. Perfect to drape over walls,or in your rockery, this guy can also help in the perennial fight against weeds.

 

St John’s Wort

St John’s wort is a really fast grower. This one is a tough perennial that produces bright yellow flowers from July until late September. They grow like mad, creeping up to 40cm per year. The flowers have serious skills when it comes to your health as well. They act as natural anti-inflammatories, as an astringent, and most famously, for ‘that time of the month’.


Aubrieta

Our final contender is the brilliantly colourful, aubrieta. This plant is fully hardy and comes in a range of bright and deep colours when it flowers from April to May. Aubrieta grows really well cascading over walls, growing up slopes, covering big empty patches in your beds, and in containers.

 

If you have a smaller garden, or don’t want to grow plants that might interfere with the rest of your planting scheme, why not give these guys a try in a container?

Add a layer of broken crockery, or medium sized stones to the bottom. Next, fill almost to the top with good quality peat-free compost, then pop in your plants, water and feed and Bob’s your uncle.

Choose one of our fab containers ready-made with pre-drilled drainage holes, and a geo-textile liner. Try the trough-shaped Olea planter, with its large capacity, you get to show off the glory of these ground cover plants, while keeping them well under control at the same time. The perfect option for the smaller garden.