Steep Slopes

Steep slopes can include ravines, stream banks, or any slope in your yard that can be eroded.  The best way to keep the soil in place and prevent erosion on the slopes is to plant deep rooted vegetation that will hold the soil.


English Ivy, Crown Vetch, Pachysandra, Myrtle, and other ornamental ground covers should NEVER be used on slopes. These plants have shallow roots and will DESTABILIZE a slope rather than help stabilize it.


Try these plants on a shady steep slope:


  • Redosier Dogwood (Cornus stolonifera)
  • Grey Stem Dogwood (Cornus racemosa)
  • Silky Dogwood (Cornus amomum)
  • Green Twig Dogwood (Cornus rugosa)
  • Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)
  • Virginia Sweetspire (Itea virginica)
  • Bottlebrush Buckeye (Aesculusparviflora)
  • Red Chokeberry (Aronia arbutifolia)
  • Black Chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa)


  • Woodland Sunflower (Helianthus strumosus)
  • Showy Sunflower (Helianthus laetiflorus)

Ground Cover:

  • Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia)
  • Checkerberry or Creeping Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens)

For sunnier areas, use native wildflowers and grasses.