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

Monday - September 08, 2008

From: Bastrop, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Groundcovers
Title: Groundcovers to replace meadow grasses
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Are there any groundcovers that are tolerant to local conditions between Bastrop and Elgin and hardy enough to takeover meadow grasses? I have a couple of acres that was a meadow before I moved here eight years ago. There are numerous native grasses and the area ranges from full sun to full shade (cedar, live oak, crepe myrtle, desert willow). The full sun areas are on a slope. The plants would need to be tolerant to drought (and flooding) as there is no supplemental watering once established. With my age and health, mowing is increasingly difficult. Without mowing the grasses and other plants would soon be over my head as they were when I moved here.

ANSWER:

There are no plants that we know of, native or otherwise, that will do what you are wanting them to do.  Some grasses stay generally short, but none will completely take over a meadow area to the exclusion of all other plants.  Without mowing or some other land management, you will inevitably have a mix of plants, both short and tall, including grasses, forbs and woody species.
 

More Groundcovers Questions

Native ground cover for Houston
March 02, 2009 - I'm interested in finding native ground cover, either perennials or grasses, that would help control erosion on a steep slope along Soldiers Creek. Currently there is Jasmine, ivy, prairie spiderwort...
view the full question and answer

Deer-resistant groundcover for New Braunfels, TX
September 24, 2011 - Could you recommend some deer resistant ground cover plants for the New Braunfels area? We have tried Ajuga and Katie's Ruellia and they have been eaten.
view the full question and answer

Native ground cover for Fort Lauderdale, FL.
November 02, 2010 - I just moved into a duplex with a narrow back yard with dark sandy soil and no irrigation system. I travel and am looking for a hardy ground cover that can take heat, drought and limited sun between 1...
view the full question and answer

Ground covering around cypresses in pool area
July 25, 2008 - We have multiple cypress trees planted along our pool area..they shed way too much..but I'm looking for something to put under and around them over the dirt..do you suggest wood chips or a ground cov...
view the full question and answer

Aggressive Frogfruit
September 17, 2009 - I have frogfruit voluntarily growing in my flower beds. I had intended to use it as a ground cover but am concerned that it is taking over. Will it kill (smother) my flowers that I have planted for bu...
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