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?


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

Friday - May 23, 2014

From: Batson, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Container Gardens, Ferns, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs
Title: Hanging Baskets for Batson, TX
Answered by: Larry Larson


What plants can I put in hanging baskets for my shady porch?


  This Mr Smarty Plants just finished a rather large answer for a relatively equivalent question from Austin.  It has lots of references to "How-to" articles and to even further previous Mr Smarty Plants questions and answers.  Rather than pulling all that right back in, I'm just going to reference you to that answer [be ready for LOTS of references] and then go on to look at Shade Plants for Hardin County.

Here is that answer:   Hanging plants for Austin, TX

The general process for selecting plants for a specific climate and area is to use the “Recommended Species” lists from the Native Plant Database.  This link is to the “Pineywoods Collection”.

One can further reduce this list to specific characteristics by sorting for them.  When I selected “Shade” for Light Requirement and heights of 0-1 and 1-3 feet, I was left with 23 results.  You can do this yourself and review the results for your favorites.  I found the following suggestions to be good possibilities for your baskets:

Herbs:  Mitchella repens (Partridgeberry), Phlox divaricata (Wild blue phlox), Rudbeckia hirta (Black-eyed susan), Ruellia nudiflora (Violet ruellia)

Ferns:  Onoclea sensibilis (Sensitive fern), Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern), Pteridium aquilinum var. pseudocaudatum (Bracken fern), Thelypteris kunthii (Wood fern)

Shrubs:   Ceanothus americanus (New jersey tea), Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (Coralberry)


From the Image Gallery

Mitchella repens

Wild blue phlox
Phlox divaricata

Black-eyed susan
Rudbeckia hirta

Violet ruellia
Ruellia nudiflora

Sensitive fern
Onoclea sensibilis

Christmas fern
Polystichum acrostichoides

Bracken fern
Pteridium aquilinum var. pseudocaudatum

Wood fern
Thelypteris kunthii

New jersey tea
Ceanothus americanus

Symphoricarpos orbiculatus

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Weak stems on asters and ironweed from Woodbridge ON
June 06, 2012 - My question is in regards to plants flopping over. My smooth asters and ironweeds never seem to have strong stems. Is because the soil is too fertile or maybe too shallow?
view the full question and answer

English Garden in Texas from Dallas
February 28, 2013 - I am introducing perennials to my rose beds, and would like help for an English Garden look in TEXAS!!! (stump the expert!!) One plant I am interest in, as it provides blue (which roses don't) is m...
view the full question and answer

Leaf browning on blackfoot daisy in Arizona
August 26, 2008 - Blackfoot daisy plant was doing great; then, in one day, it turned brown like it had no water. Have a watering system in place which waters once a day for one hour 1/2 gallon a hour.
view the full question and answer

Trimming of Flame acanthus from Bastrop TX
February 17, 2012 - My flame acanthus never lost leaves off the bottom tier of branches this winter. With the brief warm weather and rain we've had, the top and middle tier of branches have all re-leafed. It is very l...
view the full question and answer

Deer resistant, Shaded Privacy Hedge for Wakefield RI
September 12, 2013 - We recently removed the dead undergrowth of white pines that were used for privacy. We need advice as to what type of evergreen would be suitable for growth beneath the branches above. It is VERY shad...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center