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?

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
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
3 ratings

Monday - November 16, 2009

From: OKC, OK
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Drought tolerant plants for butterflies and hummingbirds
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

I have about 150 sq ft of space in our backyard (urban OKC residence) that gets direct sun in the morning but is 100% shaded by 11-Noon from 2 large Sycamore trees. The space is on the west side of the yard and also shaded after noon by a 7 foot fence. Would like to fill this area with a (wide?) variety of native and drought resistance flowers/shrubs attractive to humming birds and butterflies, and with a large range of color and blooming times.

ANSWER:

Well that's a tall order, but not an impossibility.  There are plants that meet those requirements ... just not a wide variety! We commend your decision to install plants that have a benefit for wildlife and will help make your garden a sustainable ecosystem.  We recommend you investigate transforming your garden intoa Wildlfife Habitat. Visit the National Wildlife Federation website for more information.

By narrowing the search on our Recommended Species search for Oklahoma for part sun and dry conditions we find some perennials that fit the bill. You will find more  on the list.

Aquilegia canadensis (red columbine)

Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed)

Callirhoe involucrata (purple poppymallow)

Coreopsis lanceolata (lanceleaf tickseed)

Echinacea purpurea (eastern purple coneflower)

Monarda fistulosa (wild bergamot)

Ipomopsis rubra (standing-cypress)

Salvia coccinea (blood sage)

You will likely not have room for many shrubs, but here are two good ones that will survive in those conditions, attract wildlife and have great fall color.

Amelanchier arborea (common serviceberry)

Rhus glabra (smooth sumac)


Aquilegia canadensis

Asclepias tuberosa

Callirhoe involucrata

Coreopsis lanceolata

Echinacea purpurea

Monarda fistulosa

Ipomopsis rubra

Salvia coccinea

Amelanchier arborea

Rhus glabra

 

 

 

 

 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Plants for Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui) butterflies in Michigan
April 19, 2009 - I am wanting to raise Painted Lady butterflies and release them into my garden. I know that they like to eat Mallow plants, but I was wondering what kind of Mallow plant would be best for my garden?
view the full question and answer

Plants for birds in Virginia
February 17, 2008 - Hi there, I would like to plant some bird-friendly shrubs in my backyard, here in the Shenandoah Valley. I have read that birds like winterberries, and I think they are gorgeous. But, this is mid-Fe...
view the full question and answer

Host plants for Painted Lady Butterflies (Vanessa cardui)
August 22, 2009 - I am looking for host plants for the Painted Lady Butterfly that I can plant in my school's (I am a teacher) native plant/butterfly garden. As part of the curriculum, each Fall our 2nd graders study ...
view the full question and answer

Plants for field mice in habitat restoration in Dallas County, Texas
March 14, 2011 - For grassland and bottomland habitat restoration projects in North Central Texas (Dallas), what native plants would be beneficial as food sources for field mice. Thanks.
view the full question and answer

Wildlife plants for backyard on Galveston Island
July 25, 2010 - Can you help me select native plants for Galveston Island that can be used in a backyard to attract native wildlife?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center