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
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - April 25, 2009

From: Salisbury, CT
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Native plants to retain slope in Salisbury, CT
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We want to plant a newly dug out slope with native plants that will retain the dirt. It is sun to part sun near a lake summer cottage. Thanks!!!

ANSWER:

The best thing for retention of that slope would be a meadow garden, which combines grasses, which are world class erosion preventers, and wildflowers for a pleasant view from your cottage. Begin by reading our How-To Article, Meadow Gardening. We will follow up by going to our Recommended Species section, clicking on Connecticut on the map, and searching for grasses and wildflowers native to your area that you can plant. You can repeat the same process, going to the Native Plant Database for the grasses, and make your own choices. Follow the plant links to each individual plant webpage to learn propagation techniques, amount of moisture needed,etc.

Herbaceous blooming plants

Achillea millefolium (common yarrow) - perennial, 1 to 3 ft. tall, blooms white, pink April to September, sun, part shade

Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed) - perennial, 1 to 2 ft., deciduous, blooms orange, yellow May to september, sun, part shade

Anemone canadensis (Canadian anemone) - perennial, 1 to 2 ft., blooms white April to June, part shade, shade

Chamerion angustifolium ssp. angustifolium (fireweed) - perennial, 3 to 5 ft. tall, blooms white, piink purple June to August, sun

Conoclinium coelestinum (blue mistflower) - perennial to 3 ft., blooms blue, purple July to November, sun, part shade

Coreopsis lanceolata (lanceleaf tickseed) - perennial to 1 ft. tall, blooms yellow April to June,

Lobelia siphilitica (great blue lobelia) - perenial, 2 to 3 ft., blooms blue July to October, sun to shade

Monarda didyma (scarlet beebalm) - perennial, 3 ft., blooms red May to October, sun, pat shade

Grasses

Andropogon gerardii (big bluestem) - warn season perennial, 4 to 8 ft. tall, sun, part shade

Bouteloua curtipendula (sideoats grama) - warm season perennial, 1 to 3 ft., sun, part shade

Bouteloua gracilis (blue grama) - perennial, 1 to 3 ft., sun

Calamagrostis canadensis (bluejoint) - perennial, 3 to 5 ft, sun to shade

Elymus canadensis (Canada wildrye) - cool season perennial, deciduous, 3 to 6 ft., sun, part shade

Muhlenbergia capillaris (hairawn muhly) - perennial, 1 to 3 ft., sun

Schizachyrium scoparium (little bluestem) - perennial, 18 to 24 inches, sun, part shade

Tripsacum dactyloides (eastern gamagrass) - perennial, 3 to 6 ft. part shade


Achillea millefolium

Asclepias tuberosa

Anemone canadensis

Chamerion angustifolium ssp. angustifolium

Conoclinium coelestinum

Coreopsis lanceolata

Lobelia siphilitica

Monarda didyma

Andropogon gerardii

Bouteloua curtipendula

Bouteloua gracilis

Calamagrostis canadensis

Elymus canadensis

Muhlenbergia capillaris

Schizachyrium scoparium

Tripsacum dactyloides

 

 

 

 

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Landscape color for Rialto, CA
May 11, 2009 - My sister-in-law lives in Rialto CA near the base of the San Bernardino Mt ranges and it gets very windy out there. She and I were trying to figure out the best native plants for her area. Her home fa...
view the full question and answer

Stopping erosion on bank of a Florida retention pond
July 21, 2015 - I live on a retention pond, which has had all vegetation killed by the lake doctor. As a result the bank has eroded so there is a drop off directly to the water rather than a sloping bank. What plan...
view the full question and answer

Need grasses to stabilize a moderately steep slope in Pennsylvania
May 17, 2010 - Hello. We have a moderately steep slope in a shady area that is in need of some help. The grass that is in place there seems to be thriving - nice and green, with good growth. However, kids running...
view the full question and answer

Alkalinity-tolerant grasses
July 24, 2005 - Dear Sirs - Are you aware of any grass species that could survive in strongly alkaline soils (ph from 10 up to 12) Thanks a lot.
view the full question and answer

Grasses to stabilize creek bed in Bastrop County, Texas
May 06, 2011 - Hello, we have property in Bastrop county, the soil is sandy loam with clay underneath. We need to stabilize a creek bed, can you suggest any particular grasses (seed) for this? Know it's not the be...
view the full question and answer

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