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

Sunday - March 25, 2012

From: Driftwood, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Planting, Herbs/Forbs, Wildflowers
Title: Flowers for an August wedding in Driftwood TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

For an August 4th wedding in Driftwood, Texas we want fragrant flowers and wildflowers that we can grow in our garden. We have four raised beds (12 ft. x 6 ft.) in a fenced area in which we've grown vegetables in the past. Now the beds are empty and we want to plant some flowers that will be blooming by the end of July. Note: we have usually had a strong SE wind blowing by mid-afternoon in previous years. Any suggestions?

ANSWER:

Were you planning to cut the flower for bouquets, or are they to remain in the garden as a backdrop to the ceremony? We ask this because it is about 6 months too late to have wildflowers planted from seed blooming on August 4, unless the wedding date is August 4, 2013. Most of the popular Texas wildflowers are Spring-bloomers, they plant themselves (or are planted by gardeners) in the Fall. The Spring rains (if we get them) allow the seeds to germinate, they grow, bloom and, in the case of annuals, put out seeds and die. Perennials ordinarily do not bloom until the second season for blooming so that puts the date at August 4, 2014. Sorry, we don't make the rules, Nature does.

There is a chance that you might be able to achieve your purpose because you live in Central Texas. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center will be having its Spring Plant Sale in April. Our plants will all be native to this area, and many will be blooming or will bloom by August. It wouldn't be nearly as inexpensive as buying seeds in September and planting them, but it's really the only way you are going to get native flowers for your wedding. We are going to go to the Plant Sale list, select on "herb" (herbaceous blooming plant) and August for bloom time.

Now, full disclosure: Again, this will not be cheap. You will have to measure your space and estimate what you are going to need to cover it. Determine the sun requirements for all parts of the garden and choose plants appropriate to those areas. Make a map so you won't forget which goes where. If you have deer in the area (and you probably do) don't plant that garden. The day after the plants go in, or the morning of the wedding, you will discover nothing but stems; deer loooove fresh tender young flowers. All these plants should go into the ground as quickly as possible and be watered carefully. In other words, you have a big job ahead of you to achieve the "garden in your head."

August-blooming flowers for Central Texas:

Berlandiera lyrata (Chocolate daisy)

Capsicum annuum (Chile pequin)

Calylophus berlandieri (Berlandier's sundrops)

Conoclinium greggii (Gregg's mistflower)

Echinacea purpurea (Eastern purple coneflower)

Eryngium leavenworthii (Leavenworth's eryngo)

Eustoma exaltatum ssp. russellianum (Texas bluebells)

Gaillardia pulchella (Firewheel)

Helianthus maximiliani (Maximilian sunflower)

Machaeranthera tanacetifolia (Tanseyleaf tansyaster)

Melampodium leucanthum (Blackfoot daisy)

Monarda fistulosa (Wild bergamot)

 

From the Image Gallery


Chocolate daisy
Berlandiera lyrata

Chile pequin
Capsicum annuum

Berlandier's sundrops
Calylophus berlandieri

Gregg's mistflower
Conoclinium greggii

Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

Leavenworth's eryngo
Eryngium leavenworthii

Texas bluebells
Eustoma exaltatum ssp. russellianum

Firewheel
Gaillardia pulchella

Maximilian sunflower
Helianthus maximiliani

Tanseyleaf tansyaster
Machaeranthera tanacetifolia

Blackfoot daisy
Melampodium leucanthum

Wild bergamot
Monarda fistulosa

More Wildflowers Questions

Native Texas Plants for a Terrarium
October 08, 2014 - I have a 55-gallon aquarium that I would like to make into a terrarium. Are there any Texas native plants that would do well in the limited artificial light of the tank? The plants should be of varyin...
view the full question and answer

Wildflowers for September wedding in Missouri
July 21, 2007 - I am interested in having wildflowers in my wedding in late September. Although the wedding is in the early fall I wanted to have dandelions but I was informed that they are not long lasting enough fo...
view the full question and answer

Deadheading or trimming back of Asclepias spp
July 29, 2005 - I have some butterfly weeds (flowers) and I have heard conflicting stories as to how to cut them back. Should they be deadheaded to elongate bloom time or does that prevent any seeds from replanting?...
view the full question and answer

Identity of sunflower
November 02, 2012 - I am not able to find how to post a picture to help you identify a plant on our campus. I believe the plant I am trying to identify is a rough sunflower. (Helianthus hirsutus) We have zexmenia as ...
view the full question and answer

Flowering perennials beneath Ashe juniper.
March 25, 2009 - Dear Sir: What type of flowering perennial plants will grow underneath Mountain Cedar and its pine needles? Thanks.
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center