Explore Plants


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

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 - July 13, 2011

From: Columbus, OH
Region: Midwest
Topic: Privacy Screening, Shrubs
Title: Shrubs for privacy in wet area in Ohio
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I am looking for flowering shrubs for Ohio that reach 8-10 feet and can handle wet feet. I am trying to avoid building a wall for privacy and would like to use flowering shrubs instead.


There are several possibilities for a flowering shrub that will tolerate 'wet feet' for a privacy screen there in Columbus.  To find them I did a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plant Database choosing "Ohio" from the Select State or Province option, "Shrub" from Habit (general appearance) and "Wet - soil..." from Soil moisture.  Below are ones that sound as if they meet your criteria.  You could do the same search yourself to see if there are others that strike your fancy.  It might be that "Moist - soil..." better describes your area.  You could search using it as well as, or instead of, "Wet - soil...".

Cephalanthus occidentalis (Common buttonbush)

 Cornus amomum (Silky dogwood) and here are more photos and more information.

Lindera benzoin (Northern spicebush)

Physocarpus opulifolius (Atlantic ninebark)

Rhododendron maximum (Great laurel)

Rosa palustris (Swamp rose)

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis (Common elderberry)

Vaccinium corymbosum (Highbush blueberry)


From the Image Gallery

Common buttonbush
Cephalanthus occidentalis

Common buttonbush
Cephalanthus occidentalis

Silky dogwood
Cornus amomum

Northern spicebush
Lindera benzoin

Northern spicebush
Lindera benzoin

Atlantic ninebark
Physocarpus opulifolius

Atlantic ninebark
Physocarpus opulifolius

Highbush blueberry
Vaccinium corymbosum

More Shrubs Questions

Non-native Jerusalem Sage from Comfort TX
May 31, 2012 - I live in Comfort, TX. I have 3 Jerusalem sage plants that bloom beautifully each year. However, just the past week one has started turning yellow and brown. The leaves look withered and ready to die....
view the full question and answer

What is the name of the Texas Wildflower that smells like grape koolaid?
March 28, 2014 - Can you tell me the name of the Texas wildflower that smells like grape koolaid? I live in north west Texas and every spring, the low growing purple flowers line spots along the roadside. It's a joy ...
view the full question and answer

Is India Hawthorne a deer-resistant plant?
July 03, 2011 - Is India Hawthorne a deer resistant plant in Beaufort County South Carolina?
view the full question and answer

Shaping cenizo in Duncanville TX
October 02, 2009 - Our Silverado Sage, which we expected to be 4' to 5' high and wide based on the label when we purchased it about 10 years ago, is nearly 7' tall and very random in shape (not the evenly rounded sha...
view the full question and answer

Protecting hibiscus from cold in Eastern Washington State
July 28, 2006 - I recently purchased a Hibiscus Brilliant Red. I planted it in an area of my garden that will give it full sun for most of the day. In the Pacific Northwest where I live (Eastern Washington) it can ge...
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.