En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - February 22, 2014

From: Fort Worth, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening, Shrubs
Title: Shrubs for a barrier in Ft. Worth TX
Answered by: Brigid & Larry Larson

QUESTION:

Hello, I'm looking for a natural barrier as an alternative to a fence in my backyard. I see several other questions answered relating to this but I'm looking for something specifically as a native shrub or bush to North Texas (not a tree) I live in an area with slightly richer soil (Oakhurst) so I might be able to get away with planting things that couldn't otherwise be planted in the DFW area. The back yard fence line runs a decent length and is already partially filled with Lagerstroemia and hackberries but I'd like to fill in the spaces with something that will also encapsulate the backyard more naturally. Thanks for any help you can provide!

ANSWER:

   I think that sounds like a great plan.  The way to get a good list of shrubs that are native to the Ft. Worth area is to use the Wildflower Centers lists of Recommended Species.  This link is to the  Texas North Central Recommended Species. 

  Searching this for shrubs, 6-36 ft [using the “Narrow Your Search” options on the right side] gives five options.  Of these:
Rhus aromatica (Fragrant sumac) and Ilex vomitoria (Yaupon) seem well suited for the application you are asking about.  Slightly less suitable are Cephalanthus occidentalis (Common buttonbush), Amorpha fruticosa (Indigo bush), and Ilex decidua (Possumhaw). On these,  Size and Aspect seems pretty good but they may have issues in that they should have moist soil.

   I also make a practice of checking the previous Mr Smarty Plants answers.  Like you mentioned, there are a few, but these seemed to apply to your desire for shrubs.  Perhaps these are a bit different from those you mention.  [The one from Central Texas is a bit far afield, but does have a great list of local shrubs!]
Hedge in central Texas 
Variety of native tall plants for a screen in shady area near Ft. Worth 
Plants for area around pool in Plano, Texas    [lists bush and shrubs] 
Plants for pool area in Fort Worth 

 

From the Image Gallery


Fragrant sumac
Rhus aromatica

Yaupon
Ilex vomitoria

Yaupon
Ilex vomitoria

Common buttonbush
Cephalanthus occidentalis

Possumhaw
Ilex decidua

Indigo bush
Amorpha fruticosa

More Shrubs Questions

Fast-growing tree for privacy in Berkeley, CA
July 30, 2013 - Help. I need fast growing tree for backyard privacy. Where in Berkeley is there a tree nursery to Buy Pittosporum trees? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Short evergreen shrub for Virginia
April 10, 2009 - I have been looking everywhere for an evergreen shrub that is 3-4 ft. in height, non-poisonous to humans, and that thrives in zone 7 to no avail. Please help!
view the full question and answer

Native landscaping plants for Sherman, Texas
December 19, 2007 - We are starting from scratch on landscaping our new yard. We live in Sherman, TX and I would like to use plants and flowers that are native to Texas and have a good chance of surviving. What are you...
view the full question and answer

Western Azalea (Rhododendron occidentale) for Southern California
May 04, 2006 - Are there any fragrant varieties of azalea that will grow in Southern California? There are some wonderful native azaleas I found in North Carolina, such as the r. alabamense and r. atlanticum. I h...
view the full question and answer

Leaves turning yellow on Banana Shrub in Eutaw. AL
July 28, 2013 - We have a very large (about 12' tall), very old (probably planted in the early 1900s) Banana Shrub in our front yard. It was very healthy until last year when its leaves began turning yellow and fal...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center