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

Groundcover for a Sunny, Steep Slope in Maryland
April 29, 2013 - I need a groundcover for a sunny dry steep slope in Towson, Maryland. The slope goes from the parking lot down to a deck area.
view the full question and answer

Will Habiturf thrive in Houston?
July 31, 2012 - Will Habiturf grow in partial sun? My lawn is surrounded by trees so that there is only about an hour each day with direct overhead sun. The rest of the day there is a light shade.
view the full question and answer

Straggler daisy as a ground cover in Florida
April 21, 2015 - I live in Hillsborough county,FL. My yard has two large oak trees and is very shady. I am looking for a shade resistant ground cover that will do well for a yard used by children to play. I was told...
view the full question and answer

Groundcover and Butterfly attractants for LaRue Texas
May 02, 2012 - LaRue, TX - Would like a native low growing plant as a groundcover. I would like it for six+ hours of sun, drought tolerant, and ones that butterflies might enjoy, while deer won't. Some winter int...
view the full question and answer

Would Habiturf or buffalograss work in Charlottesville VA
July 18, 2012 - Hello, I am looking for an alternative to traditional turf grasses. I stumbled upon some information on your site about buffalo grass and LBJWC's 'Habiturf' mix and would like to know if this w...
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