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
Not Yet Rated

Monday - June 23, 2008

From: Atlanta, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Water Gardens, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Plants for edge of pond
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We live in Atlanta, Texas. My husband built a beautiful pond that is almost an acre in size. We are fortunate in that one side of the pond is covered by trees and a natural ground cover that keeps weeds and grass from growing. He is constantly having to use the weedeater on the edge of the pond closest to our house to keep the grass from getting too high. Is there anything we can do to the edge of the pond to get rid of the grass..any spray or other plants we could use?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants is pretty sure you don't want use any sort of herbicide spray there because it will likely affect all plants nearby, not just the ones you want to get rid of. My suggestion is to plant attractive plants along the edge of the pond that you won't mind having grow a bit tall. Here are some recommendations that are native and do well in moist areas in full sun:

Ornamental grasses

These grasses look good when they are green and when they have matured and turned brown.

Chasmanthium latifolium (Inland sea oats)

Andropogon glomeratus (bushy bluestem)

Elymus canadensis (Canada wildrye)

Sedges

These are grass-like, but usually shorter than grasses and many are evergreen. Here are a couple of suggestions:

Carex blanda (eastern woodland sedge)

Carex cherokeensis (Cherokee sedge)

Semi-aquatic plants

These will grow in shallow water at the edge of the pond or in moist areas on solid ground. 

Hydrocotyle umbellata (manyflower marshpennywort)

Equisetum hyemale (scouringrush horsetail)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower)


Chasmanthium latifolium

Andropogon glomeratus

Elymus canadensis

Carex blanda

Carex cherokeensis

Hydrocotyle umbellata

Equisetum hyemale

Lobelia cardinalis

 


 

 

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Planting creeping phlox for a groundcover
June 13, 2014 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in Southwestern PA (zip code 15065). I have a small slope on my property that is hard for me to mow. I would like to cover it with creeping phlox, which I saw on t...
view the full question and answer

Seed Habiturf on top of existing St. Augustine from Austin
January 26, 2012 - We don't want to rip up an existing St. Augustine lawn (potential HOA problems), but we'd like to go native grasses (like Habiturf?). Is there anything we can just seed on top of our present lawn a...
view the full question and answer

Erosion controlling plants for a shady Minnesota lakeside
August 11, 2015 - I live about 50 yards from a lake and there is a steep embankment. Recently someone decided to cut the trees off the embankment and now the dirt is eroding off the embankment as well as off my back ya...
view the full question and answer

Muhly grass slow to green up from Spring Hill FL
August 04, 2012 - Have lots of muhly grass planted 3 yrs ago. This yr about 1/3 are VERY slow. Still look like hay stacks. No pattern in the bed. You mentioned pesticides being too close?
view the full question and answer

Solarization and hand-pulling to remove invasive weeds
June 20, 2004 - We are planting a field of native grasses, and prepared the landscape by solarization last July. However it now seems that the weeds returned with great vigor. Is there any other method to get rid of ...
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 | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center