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

Tuesday - September 20, 2011

From: Washington, DC
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Lists, Ferns, Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Native alternative for liriope
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for native alternatives to liriope for use in sun to part shade, moderate moisture planting beds. Would prefer evergreen options.

ANSWER:

Sedges would be a good choice.  They have a similar form to liriope, but without colorful flowers.  Many are evergreen and will grow in a combination of sun and shade.  Here are several that grow in the Washington DC area:

Carex blanda (Eastern woodland sedge) and here are more photos and information.

Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge) and here are more photos and information.

Carex texensis (Texas sedge) and here are more photos and information.

Here are some other choices for the DC area that are evergreen and are about the same size as liriope, although they don't have the same general shape:

Packera aurea (Golden ragwort) and here are more photos and information.

Salvia lyrata (Lyreleaf sage) and here are more photos and information.

Dryopteris cristata (Crested woodfern) and here are more photos and information.

 

From the Image Gallery


Eastern woodland sedge
Carex blanda

Eastern woodland sedge
Carex blanda

Pennsylvania sedge
Carex pensylvanica

Pennsylvania sedge
Carex pensylvanica

Texas sedge
Carex texensis

Texas sedge
Carex texensis

Golden groundsel
Packera aurea

Golden groundsel
Packera aurea

Lyreleaf sage
Salvia lyrata

Lyreleaf sage
Salvia lyrata

Crested woodfern
Dryopteris cristata

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Reproducing Echinacea 'Sunbeam' from Powthan VA
August 03, 2011 - I would like to reproduce a flowering plant- Sundown echinacea. I have a plant now. Can you give me info on how to do it? thanks so much.
view the full question and answer

Is dichondra repens native from Hillsboro, TX
November 28, 2012 - What about diachondra repens? Is it native? Thank you,
view the full question and answer

Choosing the right Coreopsis species for Tennessee
November 28, 2015 - I live in Bristol Tennessee and have replaced most of my lawn with native plants. I have been trying to learn more about the Coreopsis genus. In TN, we have C. auriculata, grandiflora, lanceolata, m...
view the full question and answer

Perennial ground cover for hillside in Holmdel NJ
April 25, 2014 - I live in NJ. I would like to use a perennial ground cover for my landscaping bed on a hill with full sun and deer resistant. It's a good size landscaping bed that is facing east (southeast). What...
view the full question and answer

Weak stems on asters and ironweed from Woodbridge ON
June 06, 2012 - My question is in regards to plants flopping over. My smooth asters and ironweeds never seem to have strong stems. Is because the soil is too fertile or maybe too shallow?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center