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

Sunday - February 27, 2011

From: Venice, CA
Region: California
Topic: Groundcovers
Title: Groundcover for Southern California near the beach
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I'm in Southern California near the beach (3 miles away). I am looking for a front lawn ground cover that can stand many hours of daily direct sunlight, but will also get cool breezes off the ocean at night. Any suggestions? We do like color. Fragrance would be nice.

ANSWER:

Here are some suggestions for groundcovers for sandy areas near the coast in Los Angeles County.

Fragaria chiloensis (Beach strawberry) has fragrant flowers.  Here is more information.

The following sand verbenas are all fragrant and, as the name suggests, grow well in sand.

Abronia villosa (Desert sand verbena) and here is more information.

Abronia maritima (Red sand verbena) and here is more information.

Abronia umbellata (Beach sand verbena) and here is more information.

Abronia latifolia (Coastal sand verbena) is the only yellow sand verbena.  Here is more information.  This grows a little north of Los Angeles County, but it might also do well there.  Check with a local nursery that specializes in native plants.  You can find nurseries in your area that specialize in native plants by searching our National Suppliers Directory.

Oenothera californica (California primrose) is fragrant and grows well in sand.

The following gumweed is not fragrant but is attractive, nonetheless:  Grindelia stricta (Oregon gumweed) and here is more information.

Here are photos from our Image Gallery:


Fragaria chiloensis


Abronia villosa


Abronia maritima


Abronia latifolia


Grindelia stricta

 

 

More Groundcovers Questions

Lawn Options for Saginaw, MI
April 09, 2015 - I'm looking for a low maintenance, high traffic lawn alternative. Will Texas Frogfruit handle the winter? My yard is small so covering it is an option.
view the full question and answer

Groundcover for Laredo Texas
July 04, 2011 - I am in Laredo, TX and no longer want to waste water on grass. I would like to pull it all out and plant native, drought resistant ground cover - low growing, between 6-12 inches, sun and partial sha...
view the full question and answer

Possible ground covers under pine trees in Illinois
April 18, 2006 - Have pine trees in front of house. No luck with the lawn around them....was told it's because of ground acidity. Any tips on how to get a lawn to grow there? If not, can you suggest some ground cover...
view the full question and answer

Deer proof ground cover for sunny area in Mississippi
June 09, 2012 - I am looking for a low ground cover that will thrive in a sunny location and is deer proof
view the full question and answer

Native groundcovers to replace non-native St. Augustine
May 24, 2007 - I live in west Travis County just south of Lake Austin. My backyard is very shady and does not drain well. I want to spend some time and effort landscaping it. I have thought about Amerishade St. A...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center