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

Wednesday - April 20, 2011

From: East Stroudsburg, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Water Gardens
Title: Need an attractive plant to help stabilize a wet area in East Stroudsburg PA.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

We have a small run off from one pond to another. At the bottom of the slope, the area is always wet--and not from the run off. Is there a low growing plant that would provide a root system to help stabilize the bank and provide an attractive feature?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants is going to show you how to use the Native Plant Database to identify some plants that might thrive in the situation that you described. Click on the link above, scroll down to the Combination Search box, and make the following selections: select Pennsylvania under State, Herb under General Appearance, and Perennial under  Lifespan. Ckeck Sun under Light Requirement and Wet under Soil Moisture. Click the Narrow Your Search button and you will get a list of 76 native species that meet these criteria. Clicking on the Scientific name of each plant will bring up its NPIN page where you can learn characteristics of the plant, such as habitat, size, growing conditions, benefits, etc. as well as see photos.

I spent a few minutes doing this and came up with the following list which seems interesting to me. Check the NPIN page for each of the plants on the list to see if their characteristics match the situation that you have. Then, of course, check out the other 76 plants from the Database and make your own selections. You can generate different lists by changing the criteria that you select.

Iris versicolor (Harlequin blueflag)

Geum rivale (Purple avens)

Lilium canadense (Canada lily)

Asclepias incarnata (Swamp milkweed)

Equisetum hyemale (Canuela)

Using our National Suppliers Directory can help you find businesses that sell the plants that youchose.


Iris versicolor


Geum rivale


Lilium canadense


Asclepias incarnata

 

 

More Water Gardens Questions

Plants for wet soil in turtle enclosure in Virginia
September 03, 2010 - We recently installed a turtle pond in our backyard in Arlington, VA. We built an enclosure around the pond to protect the turtle from raccoons and herons, and left some open area for the turtle to g...
view the full question and answer

Note on pond over oak roots from Round Rock TX
December 23, 2012 - Thanks very much to Barbara for answering my question about the live oaks - covering parts of their root systems with a pond. Your answer inspired discussion, and we changed our pond plan and moved th...
view the full question and answer

Plants for edge of a field pond in Missouri
June 03, 2010 - I have a 25ft x 50ft field pond in Versailles, MO. What do you suggest for the water's edge plantings so that we might fish over them. Weed eating is eating ME up!
view the full question and answer

Remake of church grotto in Highlands, TX
April 24, 2010 - I'm looking to reform our Church Grado. I would like some beautiful (fitting) flowers that are native to Texas. Low upkeep preferred. Possible some nice water flowers to put into waterways. Plan to a...
view the full question and answer

Wildflowers for a pond in MO
September 10, 2011 - I have a spring fed pond in Missouri and would like to plant perennial wildflowers in the area around it. Are there any that would do better or others that are not recommended? Thank you.
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