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
3 ratings

Saturday - June 23, 2012

From: Jacksonville, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Lists, Drought Tolerant, Shade Tolerant
Title: Drought-tolerant plants for deep shade in Florida
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for indigenous, drought tolerant, leafy dense plants (kind of hosta like) that will grow in deep shade (under a tree that gets little sun) in Jacksonville, Florida.

ANSWER:

This is not an easy assignment.   I did a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plant Database by choosing "Florida" from the Select State or Province option, "Herb" under Habit (general appearance), both "Part shade" and "Shade" under Light requirement and "Dry" under Soil moisture.  This gave me a list of 103 possibilities and I used the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to select "Evergreen" under Leaf retention.  This narrowed the list to 9 results.  The first two plants below resulted from that search.  I did the same search two times more except that once I substituted "Grass/grass-like" for "Herb" and another time I substituted "Vine" for "Herb" to get the final two entries on the list below.  You can do similar searches yourself.  For each of the plants I have included a link to the USDA Plants Database distribution map for Florida.  All but one of these plants occur in Duval County—Carex blanda occurs in adjacent Nassau County.

Hexastylis arifolia (Littlebrownjug).  Here are more photos and information from MariesGarden.com.  Florida distribution map from the USDA Plants Database.

Salvia lyrata (Lyreleaf sage).  Here are more photos and information from Floridata.  Florida distribution from USDA Plants Database.

Smilax pumila (Sarsaparilla vine).  Here are more photos and information from TAMU Aggie Horticulture and from Southeastern Flora.  Florida distribution from the USDA Plants Database.

Carex blanda (Eastern woodland sedge) is not broadleafed, but it is evergreen and grows well in dry shade.  C. blanda occurs in adjacent Nassau County according to the USDA Plants Database.

 

From the Image Gallery


Little brown jug
Hexastylis arifolia

Lyreleaf sage
Salvia lyrata

Lyreleaf sage
Salvia lyrata

Sarsaparilla vine
Smilax pumila

Eastern woodland sedge
Carex blanda

More Plant Lists Questions

Small to medium drought-tolerant trees for Southern California
June 01, 2012 - I am looking for drought tolerant trees to line one side of our 70 foot driveway. We live in Southern California. Currently, we have queen palms, but I would like something more native or drought to...
view the full question and answer

Plants for a bare clay slope in North Carolina
December 22, 2011 - Hi - I live near Raleigh North Carolina (border of the coastal plain and Piedmont). I have about 1/2 acre that was excavated for a geothermal heating/cooling system and now I need to stabilize it a...
view the full question and answer

Plants for a Narrow Fence Line in TN
February 03, 2015 - I have a very specific and difficult planting question. I have a narrow strip (about 2 feet at the widest) between my back privacy fence and a wire fence that marks the edge of my property. It is dire...
view the full question and answer

Plants that grow in Canada, US and Mexico from Norfolk NE
March 28, 2012 - Are there any plants that grows in Canada, US and Mexico?
view the full question and answer

Native plants to grow with Earth Kind roses
October 03, 2013 - I garden on Blackland Prairie clay in Dallas. I am planning an Earth Kind rose bed. I am planning to add 3" of compost and 3" of expanded shale and to mulch with 3" of organic material, as recomm...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center