En Español

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

Friday - April 20, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Plant replacements for non-native invasives in Austin, TX
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in Austin, TX, I have a large lot and small house. I want to do some selective planting on the back half of my lot. Currently there are large live oaks, cedar elm. hackberry, cedar, Texas persimmon and non native invasive plants nandinia, lagustrium and chinaberry. I intend to remove the invasive plants and thin the hackberrys and cedar elm that are interfering with the live oaks. Can you give me some suggestions on what to plants use to replace the plants that I remove? This will be in shade to semi-shade with caliche type soil. I want to use plants that support birds and wildlife and would to use plants that I can collect using softwood cuttings. Thanks for any suggestions you can give me.

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants commends you for getting rid of those invasive plants in favor of attractive, wildlife-friendly native plants. You have many choices and here are some suggestions:

Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)

Ehretia anacua (knockaway)

Lonicera sempervirens (trumpet honeysuckle)

Morella cerifera (wax myrtle)

Pavonia lasiopetala (rose pavonia)

Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum) and Prunus rivularis (creek plum)

Prunus serotina (black cherry)

Rhus aromatica (fragrant sumac) and Rhus lanceolata (prairie sumac and Rhus virens (evergreen sumac)

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis (common elderberry)

Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain laurel)

Viburnum rufidulum (rusty blackhaw)

You can do your own search and see more choices by selecting "Hill Country Horticulture" from the Special Collections on our Native Plants Database page and then choosing the "Narrow your search by location, characteristics or growing conditions" option.


Callicarpa americana

Ehretia anacua

Lonicera sempervirens

Morella cerifera

Pavonia lasiopetala

Prunus mexicana

Prunus serotina

Rhus aromatica

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis

Sophora secundiflora

Viburnum rufidulum

 

 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Correction of tree name from Bay Point CA
October 16, 2013 - The tree should of been Mulberry don't know how it was changed!! Tuesday - October 15, 2013 From: Bay Point, CA Region: California Topic: Non-Natives, Cacti and Succulents, Trees Title: Non-...
view the full question and answer

Weeds in Buffalograss from Edmond OK
September 20, 2012 - We have a patch of buffalograss surrounded by patio/flower garden/vegetable garden. We like B-grass, but are getting a lot of weeds despite preemergents, and some bermuda had appeared. Are there h...
view the full question and answer

Invasive, non-native Bryophyllum spp. in Austin
May 13, 2010 - I was given two varieties of what I now believe are 'Mother of Millions' and saw that they're considered a noxious weed in Australia. Are these plants considered dangerous to TX if I keep them in ...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting honeysuckle bush in Illinois
April 18, 2009 - Want to transplant 3 honeysuckle shrubs 10 to 12' tall this month, although not the best time. Please advise.
view the full question and answer

Care for non-native Spathiphyllum from Floral Park, NY
December 03, 2010 - I have a medium to large size friendship lily indoor plant that was once magnificent when first purchased it. I lost plenty of lush green leaves to brown spots. The health has improved( I moved locat...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center