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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - March 10, 2008

From: Wimberley, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources
Title: Sources for native plants in Wimberly, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Where can I go to find a good selection of Central Texas Native plants. I live in Wimberley and I want to fill my garden and land with native plants, shrubs and trees. I cannot find a place to purchase them or a place that can tell me which ones are native. Any help will be appreciated.

ANSWER:

First, go to this Native Plant Suppliers for Texas list. There are 82 suppliers listed, all of which have met the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center specifications to be considered native plant specialists. A large number of them are located in the Austin area. Some have websites, and all have addresses and phone numbers so you can find out which are the most convenient to you and what type of stock they carry.

Next, and this is better still, plan to come to the Spring Plant Sale at the Wildflower Center. The link will give you open dates, times, and other links to prices and plant lists. And, every minute of the sale, there will be staff and volunteers there to answer questions, help you find what you want, or make other suggestions. Most of the plants are native to Central Texas, and/or will grow well here. The Native Plant Society of Texas also has a tent onsite at the sale, and can sell you both seeds and plants and answer questions, as well. If you are a member of the Wildflower Center you can come to the Members Pre-sale on Friday, March 11. This is our most popular session, and you can even join at the gate and still get in at 1:00 on Friday. Click here to find out about membership.

Another option that you can do from your own computer is avail yourself of our Native Plant Database. If you have seen a plant at a nursery or in a catalog that you like, you can use the search function to find out if it is native. If it's not in our database, it's probably not native, at least not in this area. Or, scroll down a little on the same page and use our "Combination Search." This permits you to name characteristics you would like in a plant for your garden: State (Texas, of course), Habit (herb, shrub, etc.), Duration (annual or perennial), sun exposure, and moisture of soil. If you really want to refine your search, you can make it even more selective and name months you would like bloom and colors. When you get your selected list, click on the scientific name and it will take you to a page of information about that plant-it should grow under all the conditions you have specified, and will also have range where it grows, sometimes propagation information, perhaps wildlife it attracts, or doesn't attract, as in the case of deer. At the bottom of that page, there may also be links to other websites, such as e-Flora, USDA, or Google for that particular plant.

Yet another resource for lists of plants good for this area is this Kerrville Native Plants of Texas website.

And, finally, if all else fails, do what you did this time and Ask Mr. Smarty Plants. We're always right here at the other end of your computer line, waiting to help.

 

 

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