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

Thursday - March 30, 2006

From: Round Rock, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Drought Tolerant
Title: Low maintenance, drought tolerant, native plants for school garden in Round Rock
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Our school is about to plant a memorial garden but need very drought tolerant plants and flowers as the schools water very little during the summer months. What would you suggest? The district does not finance landscaping except to the extent of mowing the lawn.

ANSWER:

Here are some recommendations for drought-tolerant species for your area. If there is some other particular plant you would like to see in your memorial garden, you can check for its drought tolerance in our Native Plants Database by selecting "Growing Conditions" in the menu at the top of the page for each plant.

Trees
Yaupon holly (Ilex vomitoria), an evergreen
Purple sage (Leucophyllum frutescens), an evergreen
Mexican plum (Prunus mexicana)
Eve's necklace (Sophora affinis)
Mexican buckeye (Ungnadia speciosa)
Rusty blackhaw (Viburnum rufidulum)

Deciduous Shrubs
American beautyberry (Calicarpa americana)
Fragrant sumac (Rhus aromatica)
Evergreen sumac (Rhus virens), an evergreen
Prairie flameleaf sumac (Rhus lanceolata)

Perennials
Butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa)
Sundrops (Calylophus berlandieri)
Cutleaf daisy (Engelmannia peristenia)
Maximilian sunflower (Helianthus maximiliani)
Red yucca (Hesperaloe parviflora)
Gayfeather (Liatris mucronata)
Texas star (Lindheimera texana)
Barbara's buttons (Marshallia caespitosa)
Missouri primrose (Oenothera macrocarpa)
Prickly pear (Opuntia macrorhiza)
Foxglove (Penstemon cobaea)
Mexican hat (Ratibida columnifera)
Mealy sage (Salvia farinacea)
Western spiderwort (Tradescantia occidentalis)
Twisted-leaf yucca Yucca rupicola)

Please note that for the woody plants (trees and shrubs) especially, it may be necessary to do a moderate amount of watering until their root systems are established.
 

More Drought Tolerant Questions

Eight Foot Screen for Austin, TX
September 01, 2011 - I'm looking for a fast-growing shrub to "extend" the height of my fence and provide privacy in my yard in Austin. My lot is pretty much full sun and very dry, mostly clay soil. 8' is my goal. Than...
view the full question and answer

2012 wildflower forecast from Friendswood TX
September 29, 2011 - What is your current view of the 2012 Wildflower Forecast? What weeks might be best for someone traveling from Colorado to see our flowers? We are concerned about what the drought will do to the 20...
view the full question and answer

Leaves dropping from a potted Mesquite
August 11, 2014 - I have a Prosopis pubescens (Screwbean Mesquite) that I purchased at a nursery in Alpine, TX just a few miles away from me. It was a in nursery style black plastic container. The mesquite is perhaps a...
view the full question and answer

Privacy screen for Sedona AZ
August 02, 2013 - I live In Sedona Az. A builder just built a house next to my house and the new house is ugly to look at. What plant or tree would grow fast and reach 18 foot in height fast. It can be about 5 to 6 foo...
view the full question and answer

Small to medium drought-tolerant trees for Southern California
June 01, 2012 - I am looking for drought tolerant trees to line one side of our 70 foot driveway. We live in Southern California. Currently, we have queen palms, but I would like something more native or drought to...
view the full question and answer

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