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

Sunday - November 28, 2010

From: austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening, Shrubs
Title: Evergreen Hedge for Austin
Answered by: Mike Tomme

QUESTION:

Hello, We live in Austin and have a yard that is almost fully shaded. We have a few burford holly bushes there, but would like to add some evergreen interest. We would love a tall hedge (around 8 ft or so). Any suggestions? The burford holly bushes have the small leaves, but seem to be doing very well. They are about 7 ft tall now. All the small trees I seem to research need more sun. The evergreen sumac sounds lovely but it may need more sun than we get and also I can't find any place that seems to sell it! Help!

ANSWER:

First, Ilex cornuta (Buford holly) is not native to the Austin area (or the state of Texas) so Mr. Smarty plants has no comment on that (if you had a question).

Getting to your question, this sounds like a spot made for Ilex vomitoria (Yaupon). This plant can be trimmed into a dense hedge, it tolerates the usual Austin conditions of heat and drought, and it grows well in the shade.

Other possibilities include Morella cerifera (Wax myrtle) and Rhus virens (Evergreen sumac), which you mentioned. Both of these will require more sun than the yaupon, but will make attractive hedges.


Ilex vomitoria


Morella cerifera


Rhus virens

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Native shrubs for wildlife santuary in Georgia
March 27, 2009 - We live south of Atlanta, GA and are trying to have our backyard certified as a Wildlife Sanctuary. Can you suggest native shrubs that thrive in partial sun, are habitats for bird and are deer resist...
view the full question and answer

What's attacking my Nellie Stevens Holly plants in Iredell, TX?
June 27, 2011 - I just bought 10 Nellie R. Stevens holly bushes and planted them as a screen. The leaves on some of the plants are at least half white - not yellow but white. Apparently they were like that when I b...
view the full question and answer

Need an evergreen shrub to hide a concrete wall and not attract bees in Cedar Park, TX
February 07, 2011 - I am looking for an evergreen shrub that I can plant in our yard to hide a 3' concrete wall. The area receives full sun during the day, and we would like something that is drought resistant. We also ...
view the full question and answer

Pollination of Fendlera rupicola
July 17, 2014 - How/by what is Fendlera rupicola pollinated?
view the full question and answer

Care for non-native Plumeria from Concord NC
August 01, 2012 - I have had my plumeria plant for the past 5 to 7 years. It is a pot plant and I live in North Carolina, I take the pot inside in he winter time. The leaves fall off, in the spring after the last fro...
view the full question and answer

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