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?


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

Thursday - November 05, 2009

From: Elgin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources
Title: Best sod for a yard in Elgin, TX?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills


First time home buyer and the back yard will need to be sodded. What is an honest price range for this service for 213 sq.yds.? The site is in blackland prairie soil. What type grass is best suited for this area and is drought resistant and low maintenance?


When you use the terms; grass suited for this area, drought resistant, and low maintenance, Mr. Smarty Plants' thoughts go to Buffalograss Bouteloua dactyloides (buffalograss).   Two of our "How To Articles"; Native Lawns and Native Lawns: Bufffalograss  provide a wealth of information about the characteristics of the plant, the establishing and caring for a lawn, and the benefits of using native grasses in your lawn. You can purchase Buffalograss sod from most local turf grass suppliers, and it can be installed this fall. We have no information about pricing for this service.

However, from the "Native Lawns" article you see that our research at the Wildflower Center indicates that a mixture of Buffalograss, Blue Grama Bouteloua gracilis (blue grama), and Curly Mesquite Grass Hilaria belangeri (curly-mesquite) produces a lawn that needs less mowing, watering, and weeding. This mixture is only available as seed at this time, and should be sown in the spring.

One of our supplier associates, Native American Seed in Junction, Texas offers a Blue Grama/Buffalograss seed mix as well as a number of seed mixes for wildflowers and native grasses. While they do offer Curly Mesquite Grass, it is available only in limited supply as seed collection for this species is very difficult.  They also have a helpful article, Planting Tips for Native Grasses.





More Seed and Plant Sources Questions

Locating Rosa rugosa for Massachusetts
May 09, 2006 - There is a shrub that grows out on the Cape especially at the beach. I have always called it Beach Rose and I have heard other people call it a Beach Plum. However, the most recent picture of a Beac...
view the full question and answer

Source for blue phlox in Whitehouse TX
July 12, 2009 - Where can I purchase blue phlox ground cover? I live ten minutes from Tyler,Tx
view the full question and answer

Difficulty identifying/finding a plant
August 21, 2010 - I have been advised that the Calandria (sic) is a good plant to cover a cement wall surrounding our home in La Quinta, CA. I cannot find such a plant on line. Can you assist? I want to entirely cov...
view the full question and answer

Where to find Yarrow for sale in the area of Ft. Worth TX?
May 05, 2011 - I'm very fond of the native plant called "Yarrow." Where might I find this in the Fort Worth area, and what are the tips for growing it. Seems like I saw it in one of the gardens at the LBJ Wildf...
view the full question and answer

Source for Bumelia lanuginosa in Austin
February 24, 2005 - PLEASE HELP! I'm trying to plant several trees called Bumelia lanuginosa (synonym: Sideroxylon langinosum). The common names include but are not limited to: Ironwood, Chittamwood, Gum Elastic, Wooly...
view the full question and answer

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