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?

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
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
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - April 15, 2008

From: Liberty Hill, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening, Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs
Title: Plants for Liberty Hill TX in full sun
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We recently bought an acre of land in Liberty Hill, TX. We have a large planting area in the front that is devoid of any plant life. I would like to turn this into a semi shaded area with some annual showy flowers. The area is not manually watered, and receives full sun. We are also looking to create a natural looking hedge like barrier between our yard and the neighbors, also in direct sun and not manually watered.

ANSWER:

Let's start with barrier-like hedge plants. First of all, even though you won't be watering them on a regular basis, you may have to do a bit of watering to get them established. After that, the shrubs that I am going to recommend should do well with no supplemental watering. After all, they are natives that have to survive with the rains that fall in Central Texas. You would probably prefer evergreens if you are looking for a privacy hedge. Many of these also have the advantage of producing berries that attract birds and other wildlife. Here are a few suggestions:

Mahonia trifoliolata (agarita)

Ilex vomitoria (yaupon)

Morella cerifera (wax myrtle)

Leucophyllum frutescens (Cenizo)

Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar)

This redcedar can grow into a large tree, but can also be pruned into a hedge. Also, if you already have Juniperus ashei (Ashe's juniper) trees in the area (Mr. SP would be surprised if you didn't have at least a few), they can be pruned into reasonable trees or shrubs, too, to give you shade and privacy. They are definitely well-adapted to our climate, etc. You can keep them in check by further pruning and by cutting down small ones that crop up.

For the area where you want to grow perennial flowers, I suggest that you visit our Central Texas Recommended species pages. There you will find a large variety of perennials and annuals to choose from that do well in Central Texas. Mr. SP recommends that you include some native grasses with your flowers. For example, Schizachyrium scoparium (little bluestem) and Bouteloua hirsuta (hairy grama) are perennial clump grasses that are attractive even after they have died in the fall.

Here are a few perennial flowers from the list that should do well:

Melampodium leucanthum (plains blackfoot)

Lantana urticoides (Texas lantana)

Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii (wax mallow)

Salvia farinacea (mealycup sage)

Thelesperma filifolium var. filifolium (stiff greenthread)

There are many more for you to choose from and, since your area is fairly large, you might like to read our article "Meadow Gardening" for recommendations on how to plant and maintain your area.


Mahonia trifoliolata

Ilex vomitoria

Morella cerifera

Leucophyllum frutescens

Juniperus virginiana

Schizachyrium scoparium

Bouteloua hirsuta

Melampodium leucanthum

Lantana urticoides

Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii

Salvia farinacea

Thelesperma filifolium var. filifolium

 

 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Screening Planter Recommendations for Lakeway TX
May 16, 2012 - I live in Lakeway in a townhome. The parking lot is directly in front of my unit so I always see headlights and cars. The HOA has agreed to build a planter about 4 feet high to help hide the cars. W...
view the full question and answer

Construction problems on site in Mansfield OH
April 28, 2012 - Last year we had a rectangular above ground pool put in the person who "leveled" for use did a terrible job and basically dug a huge hole for us to put our pool in. The back side of the pool is abou...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for shrubs for a screening barrier along a fence line in Austin, TX.
July 24, 2009 - Hi! I am new to Austin and I live in a town home community that backs up to an existing neighborhood. There is no screening on my fenceline, which is only about 30 feet from my back porch! I also ha...
view the full question and answer

Hedgerow plants non-toxic to horses
April 07, 2012 - What would be a good, fast growing, hedgerow plant that is NON-POISONOUS TO HORSES? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Plants for privacy hedge in North Las Vegas
October 29, 2007 - My lot is in North Las Vegas. Looking to plant something that will be a privacy hedge. Full sun with horrible soil. Local nursery suggested the following: Green Cloud and Gray Cloud Texas Sage, Feat...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center