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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 is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - December 19, 2011

From: Hillsboro, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Propagation, Groundcovers, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Source of dollarweed for shady lawn in Hillsboro TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Hillsboro,Tx - Where can I get Dollar Weed for my shady lawn?

ANSWER:

As you can see from this USDA Plant Profile Map, Hydrocotyle umbellata (Manyflower marshpennywort), also referred to by the common name "dollarweed," is not necessarily native to Hill County. A near relative is Hydrocotyle bonariensis (Largeleaf pennywort), quite similar. Both are widely considered as weeds, although we think it is a good native replacement for non-natives that will grow in the shade, and feel sure it will grow in Hill County if it isn't already there. Here is a previous Mr. Smarty Plants answer that deals with that subject. If you follow the plant link above, you will learn that it will thrive in moist or wet soil, grows in sun, part shade or shade, is 3 to 10 inches tall and blooms from April to October. Siince it is often called a weed, finding seeds commercially available could be challenging, although the website page says that it is.

We went to our National Suppliers Directory and typed in Hydrocotyle umbellata in the "Name" box and clicked on Search. This yielded us no results. Then, we went to the "Enter Search Location" box and entered your town and state. This gave us a list of native plant nurseries, seed suppliers and landscape and environmental consultants in your general area. All those on the list have contact information, so you can e-mail or call to find out if they carry the seeds. If they don't, they may have a source they can suggest.

If you can find some of it growing wild, you might (with the permission of the landowner) dig up some plugs of it and transplant to your lawn. First, however, we suggest you read this Dave's Garden forum on the plant; notice how many respondents regarded it as invasive. It is always identified as being a water plant, or growing in wet conditions. In terms of the weather Texas has had this year, the drought might inhibit invasiveness. We did notice that most of the complaints about the invasiveness came from Florida, which ordinarily has a more moist environment than North Central Texas.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Manyflower marsh-pennywort
Hydrocotyle umbellata

Manyflower marsh-pennywort
Hydrocotyle umbellata

Manyflower marsh-pennywort
Hydrocotyle umbellata

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