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 - March 05, 2013

From: Keithville, LA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Groundcovers, Shade Tolerant, Trees
Title: Plants for under Oak Trees in LA.
Answered by: Brigid & Larry Larson

QUESTION:

What type of plants and grass can be planted under and around oak trees

ANSWER:

   In an effort to not be too redundant – Mr. Smarty Plants has some really good answers to this in the archives.   Here is the link to a good one focussed around Austin, TX, and the links to further answers are contained in both.  The first sentence is a pretty good Executive Summary!

   “Finding something decent to grow under a Live Oak is one of those eternal challenges for the Austin area. As such, these three question/answer pairs from the Mr Smarty Archives contain a pretty good selection of advice towards native plants that will cope with the shade, alleleopathy and dense roots under a live Oak.”

Ground Cover under Oaks in Austin
Good One: Ground Cover under Live Oaks
2-4 Ft Shrub for Oak Shaded bed

I checked the plants recommended in the above links and all of them are shown as natives in Lousiana in addition to Texas, so even though the messages refer to Austin, the answers should work for Keithville.  If you'd like to investigate the recommended species for Louisiana, this link leads to that list. 

 

From the Image Gallery


Turk's cap or turkscap
Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii

Dwarf palmetto
Sabal minor

Texas lantana
Lantana urticoides

More Trees Questions

Trouble with Redbud in Illinois
March 13, 2010 - I have a red bud bush, we live in northern Illinois, it is shedding its bark. Is this normal or is the bush dying?
view the full question and answer

Grasses for horses in Austin
October 27, 2012 - Hello Mr. Smarty Plants We just bought 4.5 acres in Travis County off HWY 290. We have 3 horses we keep on it but there is very little grass in the pastures. What is the best type of grass to seed ...
view the full question and answer

Is black olive (Bucida buchera) toxic to people or dogs?
June 02, 2009 - We have what we think is a black olive tree growing in our front yard, which I keep trimmed to about 4 feet high. A bird dropped the seedling in my garden, so I'm not quite sure it's a black olive,...
view the full question and answer

Failure to thrive of one Desert Willow in Phoenix AZ
September 06, 2013 - We planted 4 desert willow trees in the summer and 3 of the 4 are doing excellent, however the last one is not not doing so well, it was the smallest of all and it started out fine but its leaves bega...
view the full question and answer

Trees for Socorro NM
June 28, 2012 - I recently moved from Austin to Socorro, NM. I want to add 2 shade trees to my hot, dry garden. I am considering Arizona Cypress, Live Oak (Quercus Fusiformis - yes, they are native in NM, as well a...
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