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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.

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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.

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Saturday - April 19, 2014

From: Cedar Park, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant, Vines
Title: Vine for shady planter from Cedar Park TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We bought a home in Central Texas and inherited several raised-bed planters. One of the planters is set up to grow a vine, but it's in a part of the yard that is mostly in the shade of a tree. Is there a non-poisonous, flowering or fruit-bearing vine that we could plant there? Thank you!

ANSWER:

We will go to our Native Plant Database, scroll down the page to the Combination Search, and designate Texas for the state,  vine for HABIT, "part shade" (2 to 6 hours of sun a day) and "shade" (less than 2 hours of shade) for LIGHT REQUIREMENTS and click on NARROW YOUR SEARCH. We trust you realize that only plants native to North America are listed in that database, and only plants native to Texas will appear because of our designation of that state.

We have noticed in recent searches for vines native to various parts of the country that many of them are invasive, poisonous or both. We will list none of those and will also check the USDA Plant Profile Map for each to make sure it is native to Williamson County or the vicinity. Our initial search yielded a total of 60 vines, which is a lot to go through, so we went instead to our Recommended Species by State, clicked on Central Texas and got a more reasonable list of vines native to this area, again selecting on Shade or Part Shade. From those we chose 6 possibilities; follow each plant link to our webpage on that plant to find the growing conditions, etc.

Vines for Shade in Central Texas:

Clematis pitcheri (Purple clematis)

Clematis texensis (Scarlet clematis)

Lonicera albiflora (Western white honeysuckle)

Lonicera sempervirens (Coral honeysuckle)

Passiflora incarnata (Purple passionflower)

Passiflora tenuiloba (Bird wing passionflower)

 

From the Image Gallery


Purple leatherflower
Clematis pitcheri

Scarlet clematis
Clematis texensis

Western white honeysuckle
Lonicera albiflora

Coral honeysuckle
Lonicera sempervirens

Purple passionflower
Passiflora incarnata

Bird wing passionflower
Passiflora tenuiloba

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