Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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 - September 08, 2008

From: pflugerville, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant, Trees
Title: Ornamental plants for under live oaks
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

What ornamental plant will do well under Live Oak trees?

ANSWER:

Some of our favorite native ornamentals that thrive under live oaks are Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry), Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii (wax mallow), Chasmanthium latifolium (Inland sea oats), and Aquilegia chrysantha var. hinckleyana (Hinckley's golden columbine). Of course, which species you ultimately decide to use will largely depend on conditions specific to your site and your design needs and aesthetic. Most shade-loving plants native to Central Texas will work under live oaks. To find more species that will work for you use the Combination Search feature on the NPIN Plant Database.


Callicarpa americana

Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii

Chasmanthium latifolium

Aquilegia chrysantha var. hinckleyana
 

More Shade Tolerant Questions

Need evergreen hedge and groundcover for shade in Carmel, Indiana
September 27, 2010 - Our property is bounded by a fencerow that is wooded and mostly shaded by mulberry and hackberry trees during the growing months. We'd like to create a 5'+ tall evergreen barrier on the property li...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen drought-tolerant screening plant for shade
May 13, 2010 - I am renting my place and looking for a screening, green all year, native plant or shrub. I plan to grow it in large planters along my street and to create privacy in my back yard. It has to be a non...
view the full question and answer

Prairie wattle for woodland area in Austin
November 29, 2009 - Can prairie wattle be grown in a woodland area? It would get part shade, with full sun for at least half a day. The soil is a bit rocky; location is Austin.
view the full question and answer

Native grasses for bare shady spot in Austin
July 01, 2008 - My back yard is shady from old Arizona Ash trees. What native grasses can I plant in bare areas caused by my dog?
view the full question and answer

Ground covers for a shady spot in central Texas
February 23, 2016 - I reside in Austin, Texas and need advice on my xeriscaping project. Portions of my front yard have always been a challenge to get grass to grow, so I have xeriscaped that area with Fairland Pink gran...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.