En EspaŅol

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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - August 03, 2010

From: New York, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Rain Gardens
Title: Plants for a bioswale in New York City
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am interested in learning about the best vegetation for planting in a bioswale in New York City. Can you help? Thanks!

ANSWER:

Bioswales, or rain gardens, require plants that must be able to tolerate growing in standing water, but also need to be able to thrive when the water dries up.  Below are some that should work in your New York City bioswale.  Since I don't know the other aspects of your site, such as how much sunlight it gets, you should check the GROWING CONDITIONS on each of the species pages to see if they are compatible with those of your site. 

Grasses/Grass-like

Andropogon glomeratus (bushy bluestem)

Carex stipata (owlfruit sedge)

Calamagrostis canadensis (bluejoint)

Perennials

Asclepias incarnata (swamp milkweed)

Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)

Hibiscus moscheutos (crimsoneyed rosemallow)

Monarda didyma (scarlet beebalm)

Ferns

Athyrium filix-femina (common ladyfern)

Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)

Shrubs

Cephalanthus occidentalis (common buttonbush)

Physocarpus opulifolius (common ninebark)

Clethra alnifolia (coastal sweetpepperbush)

Here are photos from our Image Gallery:


Andropogon glomeratus

Carex stipata

Calamagrostis canadensis

Asclepias incarnata

Chelone glabra

Hibiscus moscheutos

Monarda didyma

Athyrium filix-femina

Osmunda cinnamomea

Cephalanthus occidentalis

Physocarpus opulifolius

Clethra alnifolia

 

 

 

More Rain Gardens Questions

Bioswale for Indianapolis
September 13, 2009 - The city of Indianapolis has a very historic Central Canal, which was built in the 1830s. Due to erosion, the parent company of Indianapolis Water, Veolia, has proposed covering the banks with a type ...
view the full question and answer

Rain garden plants for Austin
March 20, 2010 - I have a 7'x1' shaded area in between my house and sidewalk where the downspout is, and would like to add plants for a more eco-friendly drainage solution. Which plants would be best? I know that th...
view the full question and answer

Growing Texas star hibiscus in Central Texas
August 11, 2014 - Hi there, I purchased a beautiful Texas Star Hibiscus that I want to plant in my yard. Unfortunately, my yard being in Travis Heights, I hit a lot of caliche when digging. To plant some other nativ...
view the full question and answer

What plants can absorb the excess water in my back yard?
February 20, 2009 - I am looking for any plants and trees that can absorb the excess water in my back yard. There is a large area that is swampy and always wet. Could you please provide me some suggestions?
view the full question and answer

School Rain Garden in Iowa
January 08, 2013 - Could you recommend plants for a rain garden to be installed on a middle school campus in the Council Bluffs Iowa area???? Many thanks!
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center