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

Monday - July 25, 2011

From: Lenoir, NC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Erosion Control, Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs
Title: Need suggestions for landscaping along a creek in Lenoir, NC
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I live in Lenoir, NC and would like to landscape my creek bank that is about 90 feet long and is 200 feet from my house. I thought about evergeen bushes maybe rhododendron; some grasses; a few trees and and ferns. The creek only exceeds its bank only once a year.

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants is going to introduce you to our Native Plant Database, that you can use to help  select the plants for your landscaping project . It contains the names of 7,188 species of native plants from which to choose.

Let’s start by using the Recommended Species List in the Database. After clicking on the link above, scroll down to the Recommended Species List box and click on the View Recommended Species page. Next, click on North Carolina on the map, and you will get a list 135 commercially available native plant species suitable for planned landscapes in North Carolina. This is more information than you need, so let’s eliminate some of the names for now. You mentioned perhaps planting bushes, so lets see what’s available. 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 the plant’s characteristics, growth requirements, and photos. This information can help you select plants suitable for your location.

You can come up with other lists (e.g. grasses, trees, ferns) by changing your choices under habit and duration. Make selections for light requirements and soil moisture based on your local conditions.

Since Mr. Smarty Plants is not sure about the growing conditions where you are planning this project (ie sun or shade, type of soil, etc.), he is reluctant to make specific suggestions for plants. He would recommend that you contact the folks at the Caldwell County Office of NC Cooperative Extension, and/or enlist the services of a landscape architect for help with plant selection and landscape design.

 

More Erosion Control Questions

Virginia creeper in trees
April 26, 2008 - Can Virginia creeper be allowed to climb on trees--specifically Texas ash and live oak--or will it damage them if allowed to attach itself? We are thinking of using it as erosion control in a greenbe...
view the full question and answer

Can Carolina wild petunia be planted over septic tank in Nokomis FL
July 10, 2011 - Could you tell me the root depth of the Ruellia caroliniensis/ Carolina wild petunia? Trying to determine if I can plant it over septic tank.
view the full question and answer

Looking for grasses for slope around retention pond in Florida
August 02, 2011 - I live in St. Petersburg, FL on a large retention pond. Most of my neighbors on the pond have seawalls. I do not nor do my neighbors to my left and right. I am interested in colorful grasses to put...
view the full question and answer

Landscaping recommendations for site in Dubuque, IA
March 27, 2010 - I need a seed recommendation. Here are the variables: Location: Dubuque, IA (east Central Iowa) Soil type: Sandy to sandy and gravelly. Part is a riverbank facing east. Steep bank then flat to ...
view the full question and answer

Erosion control in Grayson, LA
May 02, 2010 - We live in northern Louisiana. We have a small hill beside our carport that washes. What can we plant to help keep this from washing that will stay green all year long?
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
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center