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

Watering for Scarlett Milkweed in Florida
October 18, 2008 - I have a Scarlett Milkweed and it was doing very well until this last week. It now has yellow leaves that are falling off and no flowers. It says on the tag that the water is low once it is establishe...
view the full question and answer

Proper deadheading of non-natives Arabian Jasmine and Crape myrtle from Las Vegas
July 23, 2010 - Advise please on proper deadheading of Arabian Jasmine, and of Crape Myrtle. They are both blooming great but I want to know once the petals fall should I deadhead and will it help them to bloom agai...
view the full question and answer

Non-native Silver lace vine invasive from Ft. Davis TX
July 29, 2011 - Is silver lace vine invasive?
view the full question and answer

Dwarf oyster plant dying in Sunrise FL
July 06, 2012 - WHAT WOULD BE KILLING MY DWARF OYSTER PLANTS
view the full question and answer

Mulching vegetables with straw
June 13, 2007 - I have a small garden with 4 different veggies, tomatoes, hot peppers, squash & cucumbers. which plants is it OK to put straw under? which plants will straw hurt the stalks or other possibilities? tha...
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