Control of soil erosion is the method of preventing loss of soil. It stops water pollution, loss of wildlife habitat and loss to human property. Controlling erosion occurs in a variety of areas including natural places, farming and urban settings. Vines as ground covers are very successful in preventing erosion.
A rocky or steep slope can be developed into valuable property by using ground covers such as vines. The ground covers use the extended roots and their leaves to retain the soil on slopes. They also absorb water and stop the water runoff that could trigger erosion. Vines, used as ground covers, can change a hillside or yard. The slope should be terraced to help stop erosion followed by the planting of the vines. The vines can serve as a background for seasonal flowers and shrubs. Many vines that can be transplanted right into the slope will spread rapidly, controlling the soil.
English ivy is a ground cover best used in areas of shade. It may be used as a substitute for lawns under a tree canopy. It may need less trimming than grass, but it does need to be maintained. The runners that spread across paths should be trimmed as well as the shoots that climb up tree trunks.
Vinca minor is also known as periwinkle. It grows well in the shade though it tolerates sun. It has white, blue or purple flowers that appear in the spring from April to May. It spreads more rapidly than pachysandra, and it is so dense that it prevents weeds. It is hardy in Zones four to nine.
Pachysandra procumbens is a plant that will grow under most conditions and in poor soil. It develops better in good soil and does best in shade. It can be grown from old plantings with cuttings of roots. Single plants should be planted eight inches apart and will fill out over the summer. Mulch will keep the weeds down. Watering is necessary for the plants to develop, or it will not develop roots.
Using vines as ground covers stops erosion, prevents weeds under shrubs and has a carpetlike appearance.