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

Monday - February 07, 2011

From: Reisterstown, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Planting, Shrubs
Title: Need replacements for old arborvitaes destroyed by snow and ice in Reisterstown, MD.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Our big old arborvitaes have been destroyed by snow and ice. Rather than a fence we would like to use plants/bushes for privacy. We live in zip 21136. This would extend all across the back property line. The soil is just normal for the area. Deer resistant and native are preferable. Help!

ANSWER:

One possibility is to replace the old with the new, arborvitae that is. The Arbovitae that is native in the northeast is Thuja occidentalis (Arborvitae), but from what I've read, deer seem to love it. This link from North Dakota State University Extension  has a plethora of questions and answers about growing Arborvitae.

What are the alternatives? Lets go to the Native Plant Database and check it out. After clicking on the link, scroll down to the Combination Search Box, and make the following selections: choose Maryland under State, Shrub under Habit, and Perrenial under Duration. Check Sun under Light requirement, and Dry under Soil moisture. Click the "Submit combination Search" button and you will get a list of 34 native species occurring in Maryland that meet these parameters. Clicking on the name of each plant will bring up its NPIN database page that contains the plant's characteristics, its growth requirements as well as pictures.

I did the search and came up with these possibilities.

Elaeagnus commutata (Silverberry)

Rhus aromatica (Fragrant sumac)   highly deer resistant

Rhus copallinum (Winged sumac)

Vaccinium corymbosum (Highbush blueberry)

Juniperus virginiana (Eastern red cedar)  highly deer resistant Dwarf varieties are available

The plant you select depends on the growing conditions at your particular location, and perhaps your neighbors. For some help closer to home, you might contact the folks at the Baltimore County office of University of Maryland Extension.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Plants for soil with basalt outcroppings in Idaho
March 30, 2008 - We have basalt (lava) outcropping in part of our back yard and know we'll have to search for pockets of soil in which to plant. Any suggestions about what trees or shrubs would have a chance in thes...
view the full question and answer

Moderate-sized trees for lawn in West Virginia
August 10, 2014 - I recently had a landscape design completed by a professional lanscape company. The landscape is sloping down in front of my house. At the corner they included a Sweet Bay Magnolia, which we like ve...
view the full question and answer

Small native evergreen shrubs for North Carolina
May 17, 2007 - I live in zone 7 and need miniature shrub to go in flower bed situated in full sun. I love gardenias but afraid the intensity of the sun might be too much.
view the full question and answer

Hardy plants for a narrow yard in Illinois
July 28, 2008 - I have an area in my yard that is approx 35 feet by 5 feet that is shaded on the east by a 4 ft fence and on the west by the house and above by trees. It slopes off to the neighbors yard (so doesn't ...
view the full question and answer

Pruning overgrown spicebush shrubs in Ohio.
October 08, 2009 - I have 2 spicebush shrubs, a male and female, on the north side of my house. They have been there for years, but like everything else I have ever planted, they grow way larger than the catalog i boug...
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center