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
1 rating

Monday - April 26, 2010

From: Rolling Hills, CA
Region: California
Topic: Erosion Control
Title: Plants for erosion control in horse pasture
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have erosion on a slope, southwestern facing, minimal shade in Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA. The soil is rocky and clayish. The hillside is in the middle of a horse paddock and barn. What plants would prevent erosion and is not toxic to horses? Currently the horses are prevented from walking on the slope to minimize erosion but they can access the perimeter of the slope. Thank you for your response.

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)

None of the plants listed above appeared in any of the following toxic plant lists:

1. Toxic and Non-Toxic Plant List - Horses from the ASPCA

2. List of poisonous plants from California Poison Control System

3. Pennsylvania Poisonous Plants database

4. Plants Poisonous to Livestock from Cornell University

5. Poisonous Plants—a primer to keep your horse safe from Raspberry Ridge Farms.

You might like to check for more plants suitable for your slope in our California-Southern Recommended list.  You can use the links above to check the plants for toxicity to your horses.

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


Artemisia californica

Baccharis pilularis

Ceanothus leucodermis

Salvia sonomensis

Eriogonum fasciculatum

Diplacus longiflorus


 

 

 

 

 

More Erosion Control Questions

Erosion preventing plants for West Virginia
July 16, 2007 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia and I've got a hillside that's too steep to mow. I'd like to put in plants that other than weeding and regular tending, will...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for native grasses to stabilize hillside Kerrville, TX.
August 18, 2012 - We have a steep slope at the back of our property in "caleche" territory in Kerrville. It is about 80 feet wide by 40 feet and ends at a wash. It is outside of our fenced yard and we are in city lim...
view the full question and answer

Will not cutting grass make its roots stronger?
May 27, 2009 - I live on a lake that has a hill. There is some problem with erosion on the hillside. Our association wants us to not cut the grass to stop the erosion. How does not cutting the grass help the roots g...
view the full question and answer

Ground cover to control hillside erosion in Illinois
May 04, 2014 - I have seen some other questions regarding native plants for erosion control, but I am looking specifically for plants that will do well on a hill in partial to full shade. I am told the soil in our a...
view the full question and answer

Erosion at edge of driveway in Abilene TX
August 26, 2011 - My lawn suffered a great loss of grass over the winter and the soil at the edge of the driveway is washing away with watering and the occasional rains that we have. I am trying to get the grass to gr...
view the full question and answer

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