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
5 ratings

Thursday - August 09, 2007

From: Ballwin, MO
Region: Midwest
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Flowering native perennials for St. Louis
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I'm trying to landscape a yard that sits on rocky clay soil in St. Louis, MO. The front yard has been difficult because of its brutal southern exposure - the afternoon sun cooks everything I've tried! I'm looking for flowering perennials with an emphasis on native species. Do you have any helpful suggestions? I appreciate your time.

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants found several plants native to St. Louis County, Missouri that meet your criteria. Mr. SP also has added a few annuals that should do well. Those species will reseed themselves if you will leave the seed heads until they have dropped their seeds. There are also a couple of grass/grass-like species in case you are just looking for "green" to put in your area.

Perennials

Artemisia ludoviciana (white sagebrush)

Callirhoe involucrata (purple poppymallow)

Coreopsis lanceolata (lanceleaf tickseed)

Echinacea purpurea (eastern purple coneflower)

Ratibida columnifera (upright prairie coneflower)

Solidago nemoralis (gray goldenrod)

Symphyotrichum oblongifolium (aromatic aster)

Grass or Grasslike

Bouteloua curtipendula (sideoats grama)

Carex texensis (Texas sedge)

Annuals

Gaillardia pulchella (firewheel)

Monarda citriodora (lemon beebalm)

Rudbeckia hirta (blackeyed Susan)


Artemisia ludoviciana

Callirhoe involucrata

Coreopsis lanceolata

Echinacea purpurea

Ratibida columnifera

Solidago nemoralis

Symphyotrichum oblongifolium

Bouteloua curtipendula

Carex texensis

Gaillardia pulchella

Monarda citriodora

Rudbeckia hirta

 

 

 

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Fast-growing ground cover for creekside
May 18, 2014 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants. I live in Austin Texas and am looking for an aggressively spreading ground cover or grass to plant along a small creek on the back of my property in order to help with soil er...
view the full question and answer

Shady Container Plant for Austin
August 20, 2014 - I am looking for a tall plant/small shrub/ornamental grass for a very large pot that is placed against the north wall of our Austin home. That spot gets some morning sun in the summer, but virtually ...
view the full question and answer

Need native plants to place in chicken coop in Charolette, NC
September 20, 2014 - Hi, I live near Charlotte, NC. I'm looking for native plants that I can plant in my chicken coop that will produce food for the chickens. If they also produced some delicious food for me, I wouldn't...
view the full question and answer

Hillside Erosion Control for Gainesville GA
August 07, 2013 - I have a steep bare hill and the runoff from it is heavy this year. I need help with a fast growing groundcover that will help control erosion and runoff. Planting on the hill is difficult because you...
view the full question and answer

Controlling non-native Pennisetum frutescens (Naked fountain grass)
December 07, 2014 - Three years ago I bought a pennisetum frutescans grass from a reputable online nursery. It gets no supplemental water, but it is taking over my yard. It is almost 7 feet wide now. Can you tell me how ...
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