10 Best Ground Cover Plants for Texas: A Guide to the Best Plants for Your Home Yard

Texas, with its unique climate and soil conditions, offers a great opportunity to beautify landscapes using ground cover plants. Whether you’re looking for the 10 best ground cover plants for Texas in full sun, low maintenance options, or drought-tolerant varieties to replace grass, Texas has a rich selection to choose from.

Native Texas ground cover is particularly sought after for its adaptability and ease of care. In this article, we’ll explore a variety of plants ideal for different Texas conditions, including the best ground cover for north Texas shade, native ground cover in central Texas. Let’s dive into the world of ground covers suited for the Texas environment.

10 Best Ground Cover Plants For Texas

Shade-Loving Ground Cover Plants for Texas

In Texas, finding the right plants for shaded areas can be challenging, but several shade-loving ground cover plants thrive in these conditions. Ajuga, also known as bugleweed, is a popular choice with its low-growing habit and attractive foliage that can range from green to deep burgundy. Another excellent option is English ivy, known for its dense coverage and ability to thrive in low light.

10 Best Ground Cover Plants For Texas

For those looking for native options, the Texas sedge provides a grass-like appearance and is well-suited for shaded areas. Lastly, ferns, though not a typical ground cover, can be used effectively in shady Texas landscapes to provide a lush, green appearance. All these plants are ideal for adding beauty to the shaded parts of a Texas garden, offering low maintenance and adaptability.

Full Sun Ground Cover Plants for Texas

In Texas, where the sun can be relentless, choosing the right full-sun ground cover plants is essential. Sedum, a succulent, thrives in full sun and requires minimal water, making it an excellent choice for Texas landscapes. Another sun-loving plant is the ice plant, which produces vibrant flowers and is highly drought-tolerant.

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Jelly Beans Sedum Cactus

Lantana, with its colorful blooms and ability to withstand heat, is another great option for sunny areas. Lastly, the creeping phlox, known for its carpet of flowers in the spring, also does well in full sun and can provide a splash of color. These plants are perfect for Texas gardens exposed to full sunlight, offering a blend of beauty and resilience.

Top Ground Cover Plants for Texas Landscapes

When considering the top ground cover plants for Texas landscapes, it’s important to look at options that offer both aesthetic appeal and practical benefits. Asian jasmine, known for its dense foliage and fast growth, is a popular choice for quickly covering large areas. Silver ponyfoot, with its silvery foliage, adds a unique texture and is highly adaptable to various soil types.

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Jasmine Plants

For a touch of color, the purple heart plant, with its striking purple leaves and flowers, is an excellent choice. Another notable plant is the blue daze, which produces beautiful blue flowers and thrives in Texas climates. These plants are ideal for adding beauty and functionality to any Texas landscape.

Low-Maintenance Ground Cover Plants for Texas

For gardeners looking for low-maintenance solutions, Texas offers several ground cover options that require minimal care. Dwarf mondo grass is a hardy plant that grows well in a variety of conditions and provides a lush, green appearance with little effort. Creeping juniper, with its evergreen foliage and resistance to pests and diseases, is another low-maintenance choice.

Vinca minor, often used for its attractive flowers and ability to spread quickly, requires little upkeep once established. Lastly, the Mexican feather grass offers a soft texture and movement to the landscape and is known for its ease of care. These plants are ideal for Texas gardeners seeking beauty without the burden of high maintenance.

Drought-Tolerant Ground Cover Plants for Texas

In a state where water conservation is key, drought-tolerant ground cover plants are essential. Sedums, with their wide variety of shapes and colors, are excellent for Texas gardens, requiring very little water once established. Another great choice is the dragon’s blood sedum, known for its striking red foliage. Yarrow, with its fern-like leaves and colorful flowers, is not only drought-tolerant but also attracts pollinators. Lastly, the woolly thyme, with its soft, fuzzy leaves, is a low-growing plant that thrives in dry conditions.

Native Ground Cover Plants for Texas Gardens

Utilizing native plants in Texas gardens not only ensures better adaptability and less maintenance but also supports local wildlife. Frogfruit is a native perennial that offers small flowers and serves as a nectar source for butterflies. Horseherb, another native, is known for its resilience and can thrive in both sun and shade.

Inland sea oats, ideal for shaded areas, provide a unique texture with their seed heads. Lastly, the Texas frogfruit, also a native, is a hardy plant that can withstand varying conditions and provides small, attractive flowers. These native ground cover plants are excellent choices for Texas gardeners looking to create a natural, eco-friendly landscape.

Colorful Ground Cover Plants for Texas Landscapes

For those looking to add a splash of color to their Texas gardens, several ground cover plants offer vibrant blooms and foliage. The moss rose, with its array of colorful flowers, thrives in hot, sunny areas. Another colorful option is the verbena, known for its long-lasting blooms and ability to attract butterflies.

The daylily, with its striking flowers, is an easy-to-grow plant that adds beauty to any garden. Lastly, the autumn sage, offering red, pink, or white flowers, is a drought-tolerant plant that blooms from spring to fall. These colorful ground cover plants are perfect for adding visual interest and beauty to Texas landscapes.

Evergreen Ground Cover Plants for Texas

For year-round greenery in Texas gardens, evergreen ground cover plants are a perfect choice. One of the most popular evergreens is Asiatic jasmine, which provides dense, dark green foliage throughout the year. Another excellent evergreen option is the trailing juniper, which not only stays green all year but also offers a lovely, cascading effect.

For a touch of color, consider Wintercreeper, which maintains its green foliage in winter and turns to a beautiful purple in fall. Lastly, the dwarf shore juniper is ideal for coastal areas, providing a hardy, evergreen cover that can withstand salty conditions. These evergreen ground covers are great for maintaining a lush, green landscape in Texas throughout the seasons.

Ground Cover Plants that Thrive in Texas Heat

Texas heat can be intense, but there are ground cover plants that not only survive but thrive in these conditions. Stonecrop, known for its succulent leaves and tolerance to heat, is a great choice for sunny and hot areas. Another heat-lover is the beach sunflower, which offers bright yellow flowers and can handle the Texas sun with ease.

For a more grass-like appearance, Bermuda grass, while not a traditional ground cover, is incredibly heat-tolerant and provides a dense, green carpet. Lastly, the catmint, with its fragrant leaves and lavender-blue flowers, is another plant that does well in the heat, offering both beauty and resilience. These plants are ideal for Texas gardens exposed to high temperatures, ensuring a thriving landscape even in the hottest months.

Ground Cover Plants for Texas with Minimal Water Needs

In regions where water conservation is essential, choosing ground cover plants with minimal water needs is crucial. The Rockrose, known for its tolerance to dry conditions and beautiful flowers, is an excellent option. Another drought-tolerant plant is the lamb’s ear, with its unique, soft foliage and low water requirements.

For a more traditional ground cover, the creeping thyme is an aromatic herb that grows well in poor soil and doesn’t need much water. Lastly, the blackfoot daisy, with its charming white flowers, is not only drought-resistant but also thrives in rocky or sandy soil. These ground cover plants are perfect for Texas gardeners looking to create a beautiful landscape with minimal water usage.


Texas offers a diverse range of climates and conditions, making it an ideal place to cultivate a variety of ground cover plants. From shade-loving varieties to those that thrive in the full sun and from colorful options to drought-tolerant species, there’s something for every Texas garden.


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