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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Wednesday - May 12, 2010

From: Simpsonville, SC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Grass for dense shade in Simpsonville SC
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We live in Simpsonville, SC. Our back yard leads back into very dense woods. It is extremely shady, virtually no direct sun for any length of time. We have a hard time growing grass here. What type of grass should be grown and who do we contact to have it done?

ANSWER:

If you are talking about a mowable lawn grass, there is not a native lawn grass that will tolerate that much shade. There are probably some non-native grasses available that would work there, but they would be out of our range of expertise, as the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plants are being grown.

Since we could not find any lawn grasses for that much shade native to South Carolina, we are going to suggest that you contact the Clemson University Cooperative Extension Office, Greenville County.They are not as committed to the native plants as we are, and should be familiar with your problem. They probably have lists of grasses and might even be able to recommend nurseries or landscapers that could help you out. 

 

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