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

Sunday - July 25, 2010

From: Coppell, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening
Title: Evergreen tree for screen behind a waterfall
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I want to plant 3 evergreen trees as a screen behind a waterfall and along a fence by my pool. We took down a wax myrtle due to winter/ice damage and the mess in the pool. I want male yaupon hollies for the look I am trying to achieve but cannot find males. Would the females (berries) make a mess in the pool. Do you have any other suggestions for trees or large shrubs that can be made into trees that would achieve the same look. What we had was about 15 feet tall. Thank you

ANSWER:

The reason you are having difficulty finding male Ilex vomitoria (yaupon) is because most people want the female trees that produce the red berries.  However, the female trees won't make berries unless its flowers are pollinated by pollen from trees with male flowers so there are male trees out there somewhere for the bees to visit to gather pollen for the female flowers.  The female trees are created vegetatively (cloned) so that they are identical to the parent plant.  The male plants can also be cloned and there are several male cultivars available:

Ilex vomitoria 'Will Fleming'

Ilex vomitoria 'Schilling's Dwarf'

Ilex vomitoria 'Bordeaux'

Female yaupons will make berries, birds love to eat them, and they may make a mess in your pool.  Not knowing how close the trees will be to the pool, I can't predict how big a problem it would be.    

Here are a couple of recommendations for other evergreen trees that might create less of a mess.  There are several cultivars of Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar) that remain small and hedge-like.  There is 'Idyllwild' that grows to 15 feet high and 5 to 7 feet wide, 'Taylor' that grows 30 feet tall and 3 feet wide and you can see more cultivars here.  Another possibility is Prunus caroliniana (Carolina laurelcherry).  It also produces berries.

Finally, here is a list from the Collin County Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas (NPSOT) of Nurseries that Specialize in Native and Drought-Tolerant Plants (& seeds) in the Collin and Dallas County areas. You might try calling some of them to see if they have male yaupons.

 

 

 

 

 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Need suggestions for cold resistant, hardy hedge plant in Jonathan, NC.
June 28, 2011 - I'm looking for a Full sun, cold resistant, hardy, non-invasive plant to be used for a property line hedge for North Carolina. Preferably NOT slow growing. What can you suggest?
view the full question and answer

Privacy Hedge for Maryland Porch
July 03, 2014 - I am working on a screen/fence, which is a barrier hedge between our house and our next door neighbor's house to add privacy to our screen porch and dining area, especially in winter. The fence would...
view the full question and answer

Plants for a windbreak on a slope in OH
April 20, 2011 - Have property at the top of a valley with a steep drop off. Would like to know native to NE Ohio ground covers, grasses perennials, and not too tall trees for windbreak that will prevent erosion. The ...
view the full question and answer

Hiding a chicken house from Glen Rose TX
February 06, 2013 - To hide a chicken house, which do you recommend, crape myrtles or chinese photinias?
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing evergreens for privacy in Center, TX
March 30, 2010 - I live in East Texas and am looking for a fast growing evergreen for a privacy screen around my backyard. The area gets partial sun and the soil has a lot of clay in it.
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