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
2 ratings

Tuesday - June 12, 2007

From: Mineral wells, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Variety of native tall plants for a screen in shady area near Ft. Worth
Answered by: Nan Hampton


Hello, we live west of Ft Worth. We are looking for tall plants to form a visual screen along a chain link fence we share with a neighbor. We have post oaks there and it is very shady and the ground is sandy and sloping. Our neighbor has planted eleagnus along her side but it is only a few feet tall. The fence line is about 100 feet long and we would like a variety of native plants 6 to 10 foot tall. Can you suggest anything?


Here are a variety of native shrubs or small trees from your area that fit your criteria:


Ilex vomitoria (yaupon)

Rhus virens (evergreen sumac)


Amorpha fruticosa (desert false indigo)

Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)

Rhus aromatica (fragrant sumac)

Rhus glabra (smooth sumac)

Cornus drummondii (roughleaf dogwood)

Ilex decidua (possumhaw)

Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum)

Ptelea trifoliata (common hoptree)

Frangula caroliniana (Carolina buckthorn)

Ungnadia speciosa (Mexican buckeye)

Viburnum rufidulum (rusty blackhaw)

Ilex vomitoria

Rhus virens

Amorpha fruticosa

Callicarpa americana

Rhus aromatica

Rhus glabra

Cornus drummondii

Ilex decidua

Prunus mexicana

Ptelea trifoliata

Frangula caroliniana

Ungnadia speciosa


Viburnum rufidulum

More Shade Tolerant Questions

Groundcover for shade in San Antonio
March 21, 2008 - I have a large red oak tree in the front yard. It is keeping any sun except filtered underneath. Faces n/w and in san antonio. I need a ground cover that is drought tolerant and likes the shade and h...
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

Necessary sun exposure for Eves Necklace
November 12, 2008 - How little sun can the tree Eve's Necklace receive and still be happy and healthy? I have an intended spot that gets about 3, maybe 4 hours, some of that will be hot afternoon sun in the summer. Th...
view the full question and answer

Shade tree for cemetery in Wilmington DE
September 13, 2009 - We are looking for a shade tree for a cemetery in Delaware. The tree will be planted only a few feet from some existing gravesites. What trees would you recommend that will not interfere with the ...
view the full question and answer

Ground cover for Dallas in shade and partial shade
June 02, 2010 - What ground cover plants will grow in full shade- partial shade in the clay soil of Dallas?
view the full question and answer

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