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 - March 13, 2010

From: San Diego, CA
Region: California
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Shrubs and ground covers for slope in Southern California
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Need suggestions for shrubs & ground covers for a west facing, 45 degree angle, sunny slope with compacted, poor draining soil. We live 2-3 miles from the ocean. Thank you.

ANSWER:

First, let me recommend an article, Simple erosion control for a hillside or garden slope, from Las Pilitas Nursery, specializing in native plants in Escondido and Santa Margarita, California.  They even have some suggestions for plants that are good in clay soils.   Here are a few from that list and also some from our California-Southern Recommended list:

Artemisia californica (coastal sagebrush)

Baccharis pilularis (coyotebrush) and here is more information

Ceanothus leucodermis (chaparral whitethorn)

Salvia sonomensis (creeping sage)

Eriogonum fasciculatum (Eastern Mojave buckwheat)

Diplacus longiflorus (southern bush monkeyflower)

Epilobium canum ssp. angustifolium (hummingbird trumpet) and here is more information

Here are photos from our Image Gallery of the above plants:


Artemisia californica

Baccharis pilularis

Ceanothus leucodermis

Salvia sonomensis

Eriogonum fasciculatum

Diplacus longiflorus

Epilobium canum ssp. angustifolium

 

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Evergreen shrubs for Rindge, NH
May 06, 2009 - We are building a new house and I want to get shrubs/bushes that stay green all year long (ie:hollyberry)to put in front and around our house. Which of these would go closest to the house? I'd like t...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen for sunny, dry area under a maple in Connecticut
October 10, 2015 - I have a sloped, very sunny, dry area under a maple. I was wondering if Sweet Fern would be a likely candidate for this area. I would like it to be evergreen and to be able to survive under mounds of...
view the full question and answer

Problems with rock rose in Austin
June 10, 2013 - Hi Mr Smarty Pants, We have a Texas Rock Rose which is growing next to our gravel path in Austin, with grass growing under it. In the last week, it has stopped blooming suddenly, and all the leaves h...
view the full question and answer

Information about Melochia tomentosa
October 19, 2012 - Hi, We have a plant in our garden that was received as Melochia tomentosa. It is a woody shrub, about 6' tall and 8' wide. According to the Institute for Regional Conservation, this species is no...
view the full question and answer

Can I Grow Beautyberry
December 30, 2011 - Will try to be brief. Beautyberry sprouted leaves in vase of branches in water. It's NYC beginning of winter. Can I plant it outside? If not will it grow in a pot inside? Thanks. Happy New Ye...
view the full question and answer

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