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
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - March 28, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Deer Resistant part shade plants for Austin:
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

What evergreen shrubs would you recommend for a partly-shaded area, next to a wall, which can be trimmed to keep their shape and height (for symmetry)..this is for a front gate to a community, so we need two shrubs which will be placed in front of brick columns that are about 3 feet wide and 8 feet tall, flanking the gate. They MUST be deer proof. Native species would be a plus too. Thank you from Austin, Texas!

ANSWER:

You will get recomendations only for native plants from the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, because we are dedicated to the use, care and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are being grown. What you will NOT get recommended is deer proof plants, because there simply is no such thing. We have a list of Deer Resistant Plants, from which we will select a few possibilities native to Central Texas, but there are no guarantees. Although this year, with the rains returning, there is more natural browse for the deer, when times are hard they will eat anything that can't get away, thorny, aromatic, or plain stinky-they don't care. So, here are what we consider best bets for your specifications. Very few of these are what you would consider a shrub that can be pruned to a specific shape; most are more open and airy. Follow each plant link to the page on that plant in our Native Plant Database to learn more about it. Three of these plants  are highly resistant to deer, and you may have to make some compromises in shape and size to get that. 

Deer Resistant Plants for Austin:

Ilex vomitoria (yaupon) - moderate resistance, evergreen,can be pruned to shape

Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush) - highly resistant, evergreen, can be pruned but will lose a lot of blooms

Mahonia trifoliolata (agarita) - highly resistant, evergreen, rigid spreading branches and sharp-spined leaves

Yucca treculeana (Don Quixote's lace) - highly resistant, architectural, but not prunable

From Our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Ilex vomitoria

Leucophyllum frutescens

Mahonia trifoliolata

Yucca treculeana

 

 

 

 

 

More Shade Tolerant Questions

Non-poisonous trees to shade horse pasture in Leesville SC
February 07, 2011 - Please list NON-poisonous trees for horses in South Carolina. I would live to plant a few trees along the fence of my horse pasture and in my horse pasture for shade.
view the full question and answer

Shade tolerant groundcover plants for Tarrant County, Texas
November 01, 2011 - I live in far NE Tarrant County (Ft Worth), TX and need a groundcover that can tolerate complete shade and poor, rocky, clay soil. I need mostly for erosion control, and needs to be relatively low
view the full question and answer

Shady Perennial Groundcover Suggestions for Indiana
April 21, 2013 - Could you please recommend perennial groundcovers for Indiana that are low and leafy, self-spreading, non-invasive, deer resistant, and moisture tolerant; and that are good for erosion control on a sh...
view the full question and answer

Plants to grow under pine trees in Riverside, CA
October 15, 2014 - Please tell me what plants would do well under pine trees in somewhat moist soil in Riverside, Ca. Also, I would prefer perennials that are easy to weed. (I currently have violets which are overrun wi...
view the full question and answer

What habitat would my Antennaria solitaria like in Red Bank, TN?
October 26, 2010 - I want to know what habitat my mystery plant will like- sun, shade, dry or moist. I think it is an Antennaria solitaria or Little Pussytoes. I got it at a native plant sale here in Chattanooga. It has...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center