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
1 rating

Tuesday - April 17, 2007

From: austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Central Texas plants for dry partial shade
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in Austin Texas. My front garden area has rocky dry soil with intermittent sunlight and shade, maybe 2 to 4 hours of sunlight a day. Herbs do great. What perennial flowers (for some color) will work? I (of course) am looking for maximum bloom time. I am also open to other suggestions to spice up the garden (perhaps something that is not a flower). Also, my friend has given me some iris to plant. She doesn't know what specific type they are but grew them in dry conditions in Concord Oregon with sporadic sun and said they did well. Is it possible they could work in the space I mentioned above?

ANSWER:

Below are some suggestions for Central Texas plants that will do well in dry, partial shade:

Perennial herbaceous plants:

Melampodium leucanthum (plains blackfoot)

Ruellia nudiflora (violet wild petunia)

Salvia engelmannii (Engelmann's sage)

Salvia roemeriana (cedar sage)

Tradescantia occidentalis (prairie spiderwort)

Wedelia texana (hairy wedelia)

Shrub or shrublike:

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius (Berlandier's sundrops)

Erythrina herbacea (coralbean)

Leucophyllum frutescens (cenizo)

Pavonia lasiopetala (Rose pavonia)

Rhus virens (evergreen sumac)

Sophora secundiflora (mountain laurel)

Tecoma stans (yellow trumpetbush)

Grass or grasslike:

Chasmanthium latifolium (Indian woodoats)

Eragrostis intermedia (plains lovegrass)

Nolina texana (Texas sacahuista)

 

Mr. Smarty Plants doesn't know why your friend's iris shouldn't grow just fine in your yard, unless the Texas heat is too much for it.

 


Melampodium leucanthum

Ruellia nudiflora

Salvia engelmannii

Salvia roemeriana

Tradescantia occidentalis

Wedelia texana

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius

Erythrina herbacea

Leucophyllum frutescens

Pavonia lasiopetala

Rhus virens

Sophora secundiflora

Tecoma stans

Chasmanthium latifolium

Eragrostis intermedia

Nolina texana

 

 

More Shade Tolerant Questions

Erosion control for shady slope in Kentucky backyard
August 28, 2013 - I live in northern Kentucky (near Cincinnati). I have an area in my backyard that has slope. It is next to an ash tree and is very shady. Water erosion has washed away the top soil and pretty much no...
view the full question and answer

Shade tolerant vines for Mobile AL
May 07, 2013 - I am looking for an evergreen vine that will thrive in the shade in hot and humid south Alabama. I plan to plant on a trellis. A flowering vine would be even better.
view the full question and answer

Shade trees for NC
March 22, 2011 - What fast growing non invasive tree would be good to plant in a sub-division that could possibly shade my 2 story house? I would like it to have a tap root system so that it is strong in windy condit...
view the full question and answer

Perennial phlox for partial shade
April 16, 2008 - I am planting a butterfly garden in a plot that gets sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon. I read that phlox does well in partial-shade areas, and was wondering which native, perennial phlox ...
view the full question and answer

Flowering Shrub for Houston, TX
April 24, 2014 - I live in Houston, Texas and would like to plant a flowering shrub 3-6 feet in height. It will get sun to part sun, 2-6 hours daily. I have had azaleas in this area and am now looking for something to...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center