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

Tuesday - May 18, 2010

From: austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Shrub or tree for large pot in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a front-door entryway that faces east, what 3-4 foot shrub/tree would best survive in a large pot? Thanks!

ANSWER:

First, read our How-To Article on Container Gardening with Native Plants. This may all be stuff you already know, but it never hurts to have a refresher course. Next, you did not say how much sun you got, which is more pertinent to plant selection than which way the area faces. In an east-facing location, you could expect morning sun, maybe about 3 to 4 hours, but not if there are large trees, an overhang or other structures on that same east side, cutting off the sunlight. However, it would also be shielded from the perhaps harsher western sun by the bulk of the house. We think the best choice would be a plant that can tolerate "part shade," which we consider to be 2 to 6 hours of sun a day. We have selected 4 shrubs that fall into your size specifications and will do well in part shade. We also chose some succulents, but avoided the agaves, which can be quite spectacular but also quite dangerous to have at a front entry. Follow the links to the page in our Native Plant Database on that particular plant to learn how large it gets, when it blooms and what care requirements it has.

Shrubs for a Container in Austin:

Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius (Berlandier's sundrops)

Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush)

Pavonia lasiopetala (Texas swampmallow)

Succulents for a Container in Austin: 

Yucca rupicola (Texas yucca)

Manfreda sileri (Siler's tuberose)

Manfreda variegata (mottled tuberose)

Hesperaloe parviflora (redflower false yucca)

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Callicarpa americana

Calylophus berlandieri ssp. pinifolius

Leucophyllum frutescens

Pavonia lasiopetala

Yucca rupicola

Manfreda sileri

Manfreda variegata

Hesperaloe parviflora

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Pruning Wax Myrtle trees & bushes
February 28, 2016 - When is the best time of year to prune Wax Myrtle trees & bushes.
view the full question and answer

Necessary sun exposure for Eves Necklace
November 12, 2008 - How little sun can the tree Eve's Necklace receive and still be happy and healthy? I have an intended spot that gets about 3, maybe 4 hours, some of that will be hot afternoon sun in the summer. Th...
view the full question and answer

Garden problems from Centreville VA
July 23, 2011 - Plants die, trees won't grow. I've replaced the soil (6") twice. Replaced grass twice and planted new plants and tree. After two yrs, the tree is still the same size and the flowering bushes nea...
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native Banana Shrub from Houston
May 01, 2014 - My 7' beloved Banana Shrub (magnolia) has white dots on top of the leaves and nasty black stuff covering the backside of the leaves. The plant is dropping leaves. What can I do to save it? I has bee...
view the full question and answer

Native shrubs or trees for privacy shield in Cross Plains TX
March 31, 2009 - I'm looking for a small tree or large bush that will stay green year round to use for a privacy shield. We have electrical lines overhead so I need to keep it a low growing tree or bush that will he...
view the full question and answer

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