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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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Wednesday - July 11, 2012

From: amherst, MA
Region: Northeast
Topic: Drought Tolerant, Groundcovers, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Drought-resistant ground cover for Massachusetts
Answered by: Guy Thompson

QUESTION:

Mr Smarty Plants I am looking for drought resistant,low maintenance ground cover for a LEED certified project in Florence MA. Any suggestions?

ANSWER:

My best suggestions would be Vaccinium angustifolium (Late lowbush blueberry) and Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (Kinnikinnick).  Both of these species are slow-growing and require moisture while getting established.  Another possibility is Viola pedata (Birdfoot violet).  For an extra bit of color here and there, consider trying Waldsteinia fragarioides (Appalachian barren strawberry).

   Late lowbush blueberry is available here and Kinnininnick from a west coast nursery.  The violet and strawberry can be purchased at this nursery.  Other more local nurseries may also have these plants.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Late lowbush blueberry
Vaccinium angustifolium

Kinnikinnick
Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Birdfoot violet
Viola pedata

Appalachian barren strawberry
Waldsteinia fragarioides

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