En Español

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

Wednesday - May 19, 2010

From: The Colony, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Water Gardens
Title: Plants for area around a fountain in full sun near Dallas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I'm seeking advice on what I can plant around the base of a fountain, in full sun, that can tolerate the fountain water splash/spray. I'm seeking something that can be maintained to a maximum height of 24-30 inches or so. My preference is a blooming or tropical type of plant, but realizing the unusual setting, will consider anything. Another consideration is that it does not attract bees, as this garden is near an entry door. Thank you in advance for your consideration. I live north of Dallas in Denton County.

ANSWER:

If the soil around the fountain is damp, or even better, really wet, you could use a fern such as Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern).  I could guarantee you that no bees would be attracted to it since it isn't a flowering plant.  Another plant for very moist soil that would not attract bees is Equisetum hyemale (scouringrush horsetail).

Here are several plants that tolerate moist soil, are within your preferred size range, and grow in full sun.  They will attract butterflies and perhaps an occasional bee, but they wouldn't be especially attractive to the bees.

Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed)

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius (Berlandier's sundrops)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower)

Oenothera speciosa (pinkladies)

Salvia lyrata (lyreleaf sage)

You can look for more possibilities on our Texas-North Central Recommended page.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to limit the search to fit your criteria (e.g.,select 'Sun..' from LIGHT REQUIREMENT and 'Moist' from SOIL MOISTURE).

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


Osmunda cinnamomea

Dodecatheon pulchellum

Asclepias tuberosa

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius

Lobelia cardinalis

Oenothera speciosa

Salvia lyrata

 

 

 

 

More Water Gardens Questions

Plants for edge of a field pond in Missouri
June 03, 2010 - I have a 25ft x 50ft field pond in Versailles, MO. What do you suggest for the water's edge plantings so that we might fish over them. Weed eating is eating ME up!
view the full question and answer

Erosion control for edge of artificial lake in California
August 14, 2013 - How about erosion control at the edge of an artificial lake in Southern California? Juncus and ..?
view the full question and answer

Native plant water gardens
March 20, 2004 - Id like to have a native plant water garden. How do I begin?
view the full question and answer

Hungry turtles trample pond in Houston Texas
October 17, 2011 - I have a very large back yard pond (actually, a former swimming pool) that's home to a bullfrog, four Red-eared slider turtles, and scads of gambusia (little mosquito eating fish). I'd like to add n...
view the full question and answer

Plants for wetlands in Illinois
September 21, 2008 - I have a home that is just above a wetlands in Northern Illinois. It is on a river and the wetlands go from bone dry to under 3 feet of water. The shoreline is beginning to erode where there are no tr...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center