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
4 ratings

Wednesday - November 17, 2010

From: Las Vegas, NV
Region: Other
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Vines and shrubs for Las Vegas, Nevada
Answered by: Janice Kvale

QUESTION:

We live in Las Vegas and would like to put some vines up on the walls of our backyard. One wall is full sun, one is partial sun partial shade, and two are all shade. We want something that is non-invasive and will not be harmful to our dog. What can you recommend?

ANSWER:

You are wise to be looking for native plants for your location as they are more likely to survive the climate and require less maintenance. That said, there are a limited number of vines for your location and not all meet your specifications. Note that a shady location gets less that 2 hours of sunlight, part-shade is 2-6 hours, and full sun is more than 6 hours. You may want to put some shrubs into your landscape plans to provide visual diversity and possibly some shade for the pup. Shrubs can be shaped to fit along a wall. We have included shrubs that accept all three light conditions of your site. You may want to do an independent search on our site by going to Combination Search or Recommended Species in the Native Plant Database section of our website. and entering the specifics requested. Locate a source for your choice(s) at our supplier list or this Nativeplant list. Be aware that some suppliers will carry limited native plants along with exotic species that may not survive as well or are too aggressive. Our suggestions follow:

Maurandella antirrhiniflora (Climbing snapdragon) graces its location with delicate purple blossoms. It thrives in part-shade.

Funastrum cynanchoides (Fringed twinevine) is a blossoming ornamental also preferring part-shade. View image here.

Vitis arizonica (Canyon grape) is another part-shade vine. You can make jelly from the grapes. View image here.

Parthenocissus vitacea (Hiedra creeper) is a hardy vine that will grow in any light or reasonable soil condition. A prolific climber using tendrils, it will need support on a smooth wall. It produces a berry containing oxalic acid, considered mildly poisonous. That may make it a deal-breaker for your site. View image here.

Rubus leucodermis (Whitebark raspberry) may be another less-than-ideal vine though it too will accept any light condition. Like domestic raspberries, it can spread aggressively, has thorns, and is a biennial. View image here.

Ceanothus velutinus (Snowbrush) is a shrub ranging between 3-5 feet high with showy, aromatic white blooms.

Shepherdia canadensis (Russet buffaloberry) is an adaptable shrub potentially growing to 6-8 feet and producing a non-toxic red berry.

Amelanchier alnifolia (Saskatoon serviceberry), one of our favorites, produces an edible berry that resembles a large blueberry. The shrub has three size classes between 3-18 feet. Check with a supplier to get the size you might prefer.


Maurandella antirrhiniflora


Maurandella antirrhiniflora


Ceanothus velutinus


Ceanothus velutinus


Shepherdia canadensis


Amelanchier alnifolia


Amelanchier alnifolia
 

More Shrubs Questions

Advice for Texas Mountain Laurel in shady, narrow bed.
June 08, 2015 - My house faces N/NE and gets a lot of shade. I would like to plant a Texas Mountain Laurel in my narrow front bed, but what is the best way to amend my clay soil since it prefers rocky soil? What woul...
view the full question and answer

Oak leaf hydrangeas from Edwardsville IL
August 13, 2012 - Hello, I live in West Central Illinois (across the river from St. Louis) and I am considering planting several Oak leaf Hydrangea's in my yard. The location where I would like to plant them is und...
view the full question and answer

How to care for blueberries in Oregon
July 11, 2008 - New to oregon and to blueberry bushes - can you tell me the proper way to care for them - location-sandy, Oregon and unsure of which type of blueberry they are thank you
view the full question and answer

Milky Substance on Salvia greggii
June 26, 2015 - The Salvia greggii that I have in the front yard has a milky substance on it ... and the plants are not doing well. Is this some kind of fungi or disease? What can I do to "cure" it? Thank you! Lia...
view the full question and answer

Five-eight foot hedge for north Texas
September 06, 2013 - I am looking to find a fairly large (preferably flowering) shrub / hedge to go along 100 feet of fence. The plants will be facing Northeast, but will be for the most part under the branches of crape m...
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 | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center