This is the sentence.

In some countries, the ground is covered by snow in winter.

Is it correct? And are there any diferences in meaning from the sentence with 'with ' instead of 'by'?

Last edited {1}
Original Post
If something is covered with something, it has that substance lying all over the top of it, or spread all over it. Your sentence would be correct as:

"¢ In some countries, the ground is covered with snow in winter.

Here are some examples of "covered with" from Google:

"¢ If it all fell as precipitation at once, the Earth would be covered with only about 1 inch of water

"¢ Pluto's moon Charon is covered with crystalline water and ammonia Ice. ... The surface of Pluto is covered with frozen Carbon monoxide and Methane. ...

"¢ ... Mars once covered with lakes.

"¢ Prefabricated Steel Tube Frames Covered with Polycarbonate For medium size greenhouses & pool enclosures. Maximum recommended width ...

"¢ Working Apparel: Protective apparel Protective apparel must be covered with accepted impervious material for food contact

"¢ This box contains cherry liqueur chocolates flavoured with several flavourings and covered with chocolate coating

On the other hand, "covered by" would indicate the means or the instrument with which something is covered. So, if you want to use "covered by" with "ground," it could be in a sentence like this:

"¢ To avoid damage from frost, the entire ground is covered by placing plastic over it.

One use of "by" is to indicate the means or method by which something is done. "By" can be used with a gerund, as in the sentence above, or with a noun, as in these sentences:

"¢ In olden days, the ground was ploughed by hoes, but today in many places, the ground is ploughed by tractors.

"¢ A: What a beautiful sweater! Was it made by hand?

B: Yes. My aunt knitted it for me.

A frequent use of "covered by" refers to laws, insurance policies and warranties, like these examples from Google:

"¢ Before 1983, people who worked in jobs not covered by Social Security received benefits that were computed as if they were long-term, low-wage workers. ...

"¢ The Newsroom. Over-the-Counter Drugs To Be Covered by Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts.

"¢ I do NOT understand why you are upset. The parts are covered by your warranty.". ...

Last edited by Rachel, Moderator
Marilyn has pointed out to me that she found many examples of "the ground is covered by" on Google; therefore, it is necessary to amend my original posting.

Although "ground is covered with" shows 5,100 examples on Google, there are also 893 examples of "ground is covered by," like these:

"¢ In winter, the ground is covered by a blanket of snow several feet thick. In the dead of winter, the sun never rises above the horizon. ...

"¢ ... the salty wasteland. The ground is covered by very sharp salt crystals, so paddling is best not done barefoot

"¢ ... Did they in fall? 5 Percentage of Ground Cover (how much of the ground is covered by plants. Can you see the bare soil?) Is this different than in fall? ...

With "ground is covered," then, either "with" or "by" can be used. "With" is apparently used much more frequently, however.

Last edited by Rachel, Moderator
What is the difference between:

The ground was covered with ice.


The ground was covered in ice.

In the first the accent is on the material/substance.

In the 2nd a mental reference is made to the fact that the ground is covered as in a shell, as though being inside that ice.
Last edited by Marius Hancu

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