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?


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

Wednesday - July 29, 2009

From: Easton, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Flowering small native plants for Easton PA
Answered by: Barbara Medford


Please name small flowering evergreen plants native to Easton, PA. These need to be wind tolerant and must be taller than 1 foot tall, no more than 4 feet tall.


This is what we call a "designer plant." You look at your site, the architecture of your garden, the colors you like, and you picture in your mind the perfect plant, only you don't know the name of it. You could do the same thing with a metal sculpture, take your idea to a metalworking shop, and they would probably turn out the exact plant you wanted, in stainless steel. Unfortunately, we haven't yet located the hotline to Nature's workshop, and we have to work with what is available. While there are herbaceous blooming plants that would fit your other specifications, by definition "herbaceous" is not going to be evergreen. So, we will take a look at shrubs native to the area of Northampton County in the central portion of far eastern Pennsylvania. According to the USDA Hardiness Zone Maps, this is located approximately in Zones 6a to 6b, which means an evergreen plant would have to be hardy to average annual minimum temperatures of -10 to 0 deg. F. Follow the links to the webpage on each individual plant and learn the expected growth rate, light and moisture requirements and so forth.


Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick) - 1 to 3 ft. tall, evergreen, blooms white, pink March to June, part shade or shade

Chamaedaphne calyculata (leatherleaf) - 1 to 3 ft. tall, evergreen, blooms white April and May, sun

Gaultheria procumbens (eastern teaberry) - 1 to 3 ft., evergreen, blooms white, pink, June to August, part shade or shade

Ledum groenlandicum (bog Labrador tea) - 1 to 3 ft. tall, evergreen, blooms white May to August, sun, part shade or shade. CAUTION: All parts of this plant are toxic.

Mahonia repens (creeping barberry) - 1 to 3 ft. tall, evergreen, blooms yellow April to July, part shade

Morella pensylvanica (northern bayberry) - 3 to 12 ft. tall, evergreen, blooms yellow July to October, part shade. Dwarf cultivars or selections may be available.


From the Image Gallery

Eastern teaberry
Gaultheria procumbens

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Chamaedaphne calyculata

Bog labrador tea
Ledum groenlandicum

Creeping barberry
Mahonia repens

Northern bayberry
Morella pensylvanica

More Shrubs Questions

Plants for area around pool in Plano, Texas
October 13, 2009 - I just built an in ground pool in Plano, Texas and now want to landscape around it on my own. I am curious what plants/shrubs you recommend. There will be plants/shrubs on three sides of the pool. ...
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native Eugenia in Scottsdale AZ
June 02, 2012 - I have 5 eugenia topiaries in my courtyard in pots..I notice as the days here in Phoenix get hotter and dry (as usual) they are starting to look bad, even though they are under a shelter out of the di...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen shrub for northwest-facing wall
June 09, 2012 - Can you suggest a tall (8-10') evergreen shrub for a site against a northwest-facing wall which gets no sun in the winter but full sun in the summer? Texas sage got too leggy and viburnum will be to...
view the full question and answer

Plant Suggestions for Shady Site under Trees in Alabama
April 03, 2014 - I live in Montgomery, AL and have a bare area (20' x 5’) that's shady and soil erosion is a problem. Grass stops growing at the drip line of the trees here. Do you have any suggestions for growing s...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen fast-growing native shrubs for privacy shield in Baytown, TX
March 07, 2006 - A gas well is going in across the road. We need a fast growing native tall shrub to line our property next to the road. It needs to maintain its leaves in the winter also. We hope to cut down on th...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center