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
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - November 11, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening
Title: Evergreen shrub with dense base for screen in Austin
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I just bought a house in Austin and am looking for an evergreen shrub to use as a thick hedge between my elevated yard and a bus stop. The only shrubs I can come up with tend to get thin toward the base which is close to eye height at the bus stop. Do you have a shrub for me?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants recommends the following three native evergreen shrubs/trees for your hedge.

1.  Juniperus virginiana (Eastern red cedar) starts off as a dense shrub and slowly thins and shows a bare trunk as it ages.  Some cultivars remain shrublike as they age.

2.  Morella cerifera (Wax myrtle) is another possibility.  It stays fairly thick and if you prune it judiciously to make it bush out rather than to grow tall, it should work just fine.

3.  If the place you are planting the shrub gets at least 6 hours of sunlight a day, then another option would be Leucophyllum frutescens (Cenizo).  Besides being dense, it has the advantage of producing flowers several times a year after rains.


Juniperus virginiana


Morella cerifera


Leucophyllum frutescens

 

 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Low water hedge for Sedona, AZ
August 19, 2009 - I'm looking for a shrub to plant along a 90' property line with my neighbor in Sedona, Arizona (high desert). Ideally, the shrub would grow to about 8' and would not require too much water. What wo...
view the full question and answer

Shrubs/ Trees for Privacy Screening on Cape Cod
April 17, 2012 - Hi, I need a recommendation for a row of trees/shrubs that I can put on my boundary line to block my neighbor. It's in a wooded area that I could thin somewhat. I would need them to be fast growing...
view the full question and answer

Sources for Ilex shrubs from Boca Raton FL
April 29, 2013 - Where can I find Ilex plants in the Boca Raton, FL area? I would like to use them for hedges.
view the full question and answer

Small tree with blossoms for screen in Corpus Christi, Texas
July 26, 2010 - We are looking for something to plant along a back fence for privacy but don't want it to be a bush. What might work like a crepe Myrtle in the Corpus Christi area that would blossom towards the to...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen Privacy Hedge for Long Island
June 29, 2012 - I live on Long Island and want a privacy evergreen hedge partial sun.
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