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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.

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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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Tuesday - June 10, 2008

From: Abilene, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Container Gardens, Herbs/Forbs, Vines
Title: Native plants for hanging baskets in Abilene
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in the DRY West Texas heat in Abilene. I'd like to put some hanging plants along my back fence. Preferably something that would attract butterflies. We have a pool in our back yard and almost no landscaping due to the direct sunlight, and jippy water well sprinkler system. All we have been able manage is a beautiful green yard and a few trees. I really need some ideas on some REALLY hardy plants and flowers that can hold upto these conditions. And by the way we also have 3 mini schnauzers so the plants, trees,

ANSWER:

These first four plants are tough plants that withstand the hot sun and bloom for a long period. You will have to water them occasionally, however, and provide them with enough soil so that they don't dry out too quickly.

Glandularia bipinnatifida var. bipinnatifida (Dakota mock vervain)

Lantana urticoides (West Indian shrubverbena)

Melampodium leucanthum (plains blackfoot)

Wedelia texana (hairy wedelia)

You might consider trying a vine in a hanging basket and letting it run along your fence. Here are 3 possibilities:

Clematis pitcheri (bluebill)

Lonicera albiflora (western white honeysuckle)

Lonicera sempervirens (trumpet honeysuckle)

You probably want to read Container Gardening with Native Plants on our How-to Articles web page since some of the information and suggestions in it will apply to what you are doing.


Glandularia bipinnatifida var. bipinnatifida

Lantana urticoides

Melampodium leucanthum

Wedelia texana

Clematis pitcheri

Lonicera albiflora

Lonicera sempervirens

 

 

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