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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.

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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.

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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!

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Tuesday - July 05, 2011

From: Sugar Land, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Groundcovers
Title: Need suggestions for groundcover in between flagstones in patio in Sugarland, TX.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

We are looking for a ground cover to plant in between our flagstone on our courtyard patio. The courtyard is full sun and we currently have a crushed rock-like substance in between the pieces. I thought about moss but I'm not sure if it would grow with it being so hot and dry. We also need something soft that furniture good easily sit on. Thank you.

ANSWER:


One approach is to go to our Native Plant Database and scroll down to the Combination Search Box. Select Texas under State, Herb under Habit, and Perennial  under Duration. Check Sun under Light requirement, Dry under Soil moisture, and 0-1ft under Height. Click the Submit Combination Search Button and you will get a list of 46 native species that meet these criteria. Clicking  on the scientific name of each species will bring up its NPIN page that has a description of the plant along with growth requirements and images. These aren’t all suitable for growing between flagstones, but there are some that you might like.

Here are a few that I found that may be possibilities:

Calyptocarpus vialis (Straggler daisy)

Dichondra argentea (Silver ponyfoot)

Mitchella repens (Partridgeberry)  part shade

Phyla nodiflora (Texas frogfruit)

Sedum nanifolium (Dwarf stonecrop)


The Wild Flower Center is all about flowering plants and trees, but you might find this link to mosses interesting. 

 

From the Image Gallery


Horseherb
Calyptocarpus vialis

Silver ponyfoot
Dichondra argentea

Partridgeberry
Mitchella repens

Texas frogfruit
Phyla nodiflora

Dwarf stonecrop
Sedum nanifolium

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