Groundcover refers to any plant that grows over an area of ground, used to provide protection from erosion and drought, and to improve its aesthetic appearance (by concealing bare earth). In gardening terms, however, the term groundcover refers to non-grass plants that are used in place of grasses.
Four general types of plants are commonly used as groundcovers:
- Vines, which are woody plants with slender, spreading stems
- Herbaceous plants, or non-woody plants
- Shrubs of low-growing, spreading species
- Moss of larger, coarser species