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

Tuesday - June 28, 2011

From: Jonathan, NC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Privacy Screening, Shrubs
Title: Need suggestions for cold resistant, hardy hedge plant in Jonathan, NC.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I'm looking for a Full sun, cold resistant, hardy, non-invasive plant to be used for a property line hedge for North Carolina. Preferably NOT slow growing. What can you suggest?

ANSWER:

I’m not sure we can meet all of those criteria, but let me introduce you to our Native Plant Database that can help with finding plants for particular situations. This Database  contains 7,161 plants that are searchable by scientific name or common name.

One way of using the Database is to go to the Recommended Species Lists. Click on View Recommended Species Page, and then click on North Carolina on the map. This will bring up 135 commercially available native plant species suitable for planned landscapes in North Carolina. This is more information than you need, so go to the Narrow Your Search box to the right of the window and make the following selections: select North Carolina under State, Shrub under habit, and Perennial under duration. Check Sun under Light Requirement and Moist under Soil Moisture. Click on the Narrow Your Search button and the list is reduced to seven. Clicking on the scientific name of each plant will bring up its NPIN page that has plant characteristics, growth requirements and photos. These can help you select plants suitable for your location.

Another approach is to use the Combination Search Box on the Database page. It works similarly, so make the same selections as before and click on the Submit Combination Search button.

Growth rate is sort of a relative thing. Annuals tend to grow faster than perennials since they need to grow,  flower,  and produce seed in a single growing season. Think of sun flowers Helianthus annuus (Common sunflower) as an example. The four plants below, which may be possibilities, are generally considered to have a moderate growth rate. A fast growth rate for perennials is one to two feet per year.

Morella cerifera (Wax myrtle)
Ilex vomitoria (Yaupon)
Rhus virens (Evergreen sumac)
Condalia hookeri (Bluewood condalia)

The  Asheville Chapter of the Native Plant Society of North Carolina can also provide help with your project.

 

From the Image Gallery


Wax myrtle
Morella cerifera

Yaupon
Ilex vomitoria

Evergreen sumac
Rhus virens

Bluewood condalia
Condalia hookeri

Common sunflower
Helianthus annuus

More Shrubs Questions

Indoor lantana tree dropping leaves
November 06, 2008 - I purchased a lantana tree,a lantana hybrid that is only tolerant to 32 degrees. We are zone 5 so I brought it indoors and it only gets the morning sun, and 85%of the leaves have fallen off. The leav...
view the full question and answer

Getting rid of wild plums (Prunus angustifolia)
July 28, 2008 - When I bought my land, there was a humongous thicket of wild plums (Prunus angustifolia) approx 10 ft high and covering 5-10 acres. I raise goats, and have known that wild plums (the leaves) can cause...
view the full question and answer

Need to Landscape a Small Yard in Southern California
February 03, 2011 - We live in Southern California, and have a small yard approx. 40 x 20. We want to remove the grass, which we are currently not irrigating, and replace with low maintenance, drought-tolerant plant...
view the full question and answer

Pruning overgrown Texas sage
February 15, 2016 - Texas sage bushes have been left to grow like mini trees. Can we have trimmed back to get a 'full' bush? Bottom 2 feet of plant look so dead. Will it sprout again as a bush if trimmed back and do...
view the full question and answer

Chlorosis in yaupon from San Angelo TX
April 08, 2012 - Thank you for your information on the yaupon holly. We just finished clearing out the mulch and the red ground cover that popped up. I will quit watering it as much as the rest of the plants. Our y...
view the full question and answer

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