Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - March 24, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Suggested plants for between flagstones in Austin, TX
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I would like to plant something between my flagstones on patio. I am taking up the cement mortar and want something that doesn't require a lot of water, low growing, and can stand a little traffic. It is in a partly sunny area. Any ideas for Austin, Texas?? Possibly a grass or sedum??

ANSWER:

If the area is mostly sunny, Bouteloua dactyloides (buffalograss) would be a good choice. It requires very little water and doesn't grow tall. It can be sown as seeds or planted as plugs.

Sedum nuttallianum (yellow stonecrop) is another plant that would be excellent if your area is mostly sunny. It is cold tolerant and generally a bit shorter than buffalograss.

Another possibility is a sedge, e.g., Carex texensis (Texas sedge) or Carex planostachys (cedar sedge). Both these sedges do well in partial shade with little water.

Phyla nodiflora (Texas frogfruit or turkey tangle fogfruit) grows in partial shade and requires little water, but will also do well in poorly drained soils. it does spread somewhat vigorously. I suggest you might like to read the answer to a recent question about frogfruit.

 


Bouteloua dactyloides

Sedum nuttallianum

Carex texensis

Phyla nodiflora

 

 

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Grass lawn from Durham NC
October 08, 2013 - Durham, NC. Want to plant a small front grass lawn, full sun, dry. Willing to mow. Not good about watering. Advice?
view the full question and answer

Brown spots in St. Augustine grass
July 05, 2008 - Mr. Smarty Plants, My husband and I are in the Air Force and were recently moved to Cibolo Texas. We built a home and hired a landscaper to finish the yard May 07 (with irrigation system). We laid d...
view the full question and answer

Grasses for a wildflower meadow in Greenville, SC
August 17, 2009 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I have been establishing a wildflower meadow in Greenville, SC. Our current wildflowers are: Purple Coneflower Perennial Black-eyed Susans Cardinal Flower Butte...
view the full question and answer

Will not cutting grass make its roots stronger?
May 27, 2009 - I live on a lake that has a hill. There is some problem with erosion on the hillside. Our association wants us to not cut the grass to stop the erosion. How does not cutting the grass help the roots g...
view the full question and answer

New low maintenance grass similar to Turffalo
October 27, 2009 - While touring the Wildlife Center, our group was told about about a new low maintenance grass similar to Turffalo. It only grows several inches tall, drought resistant and crowds out other grasses an...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.