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
1 rating

Monday - July 21, 2008

From: ELMIRA, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Evergreen privacy hedge and drought-resistant garden
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for a hardy evergreen hedge for privacy in Northern Michigan. I have sandy soil. Also am interested in planting a drought garden with mostly sun in same sandy soil.

ANSWER:

Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar) is very hardy and also can grow very tall, up to 90 feet. However, it can also be kept pruned into a very thick evergreen hedge. University of Connecticut lists several cultivars of interest, including dwarf ones.

Thuja occidentalis (arborvitae) is another candidate. It also has a number of cultivars to choose from listed by University of Connecticut and Ohio State University.

The final suggestion for an evergreen hedge is Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock) with smaller cultivars listed by Ohio State University and University of Connecticut.

You can find plants that are commercially available and suitable for landscaping in Michigan, by choosing the state from the map on our Recommended Species page. When you have the list of over 150 species, you can use the Narrow Your Search option to choose the characteristics you want under Habit (general appearace), Light requirement and Soil moisture. Here are a few species that will do well in full sun and sandy, dry soil:

Aquilegia canadensis (red columbine)

Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed)

Helianthus strumosus (paleleaf woodland sunflower)

Lupinus perennis (sundial lupine)

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick)

Dasiphora fruticosa ssp. floribunda (shrubby cinquefoil)

Amorpha canescens (leadplant)


Juniperus virginiana

Thuja occidentalis

Tsuga canadensis

Aquilegia canadensis

Asclepias tuberosa

Helianthus strumosus

Lupinus perennis

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Dasiphora fruticosa ssp. floribunda

Amorpha canescens

 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

Possible low maintenance native plants for acreage in Manor, TX
October 22, 2006 - My husband and I recently bought 3 acres of former cow pasture in Manor and plan to build our dream home there eventually. Other than a few pesky Mesquite trees and one huge cactus, there isn't much...
view the full question and answer

Best time to plant wildflowers
April 22, 2007 - I am in charge of the construction of a 3-4 mile nature trail around our organization's property and was wondering, 'when is it best to plant wildflowers?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on Germination
July 23, 2004 - I just planted wildflowers and I was wondering how long before I know if they will grow?
view the full question and answer

Bluebonnet prospects for 2009 in Central Texas
January 31, 2009 - How does the bluebonnet season look for 2009 in Central Texas (Austin). Will it be a good year and when will it start and when will it peak? Thanks for all you do!!!
view the full question and answer

Wildflower meadow in Mobile, AL
January 31, 2009 - I live in Mobile, Alabama. I have 1 acre of land that is partially shaded and covered with centipede yard grass. I would like to completely get rid of all the grass and replace the whole acre with wil...
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