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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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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
 

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