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

Thursday - April 04, 2013

From: Dallas, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Seeds and Seeding, Shade Tolerant, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Nimblewill grass for a shady area in Dallas
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

i have a very shady backyard and reading some of your post I think Muhlenbergia schreberi (nimblewill) will survive. Two questions: Is it drought resistant? Where can I buy the seeds?

ANSWER:

Follow this link, Muhlenbergia schreberi (Nimblewill), to our webpage on that plant to learn its growing conditions. According to this USDA Plant Profile Map, it is native to Texas but not to Dallas County. According to both our webpage and other references this plant needs a moist soil, which  does not sound like drought resistant to us. Furthermore, in several of the references it was referred to as a weed and accused of invasiveness. If you decide you want to try it anyway, go to our National Suppliers Directory in the "Enter Search Location" box and click GO. You will get a list of native plant nurseries, seed companies and consultants in your general area. All have contact information, so you can find out if they carry what you need before you start out to shop.

Here is an article from Pennsylvania State University that refers to nimblewill as a weed. More and more, we are recommending other ways than lawn grass to deal with dry or shady areas. If you are interested, you might read some of these previous Mr. Smarty Plants answers:

Xeriscape in Austin

Native Groundcovers for Texas

 

From the Image Gallery


Nimblewill
Muhlenbergia schreberi

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Sources for native plants from Austin TX
December 19, 2012 - Hello. I am currently planning a Texas native plant garden. Unfortunately, I cannot seem to find the seeds/bulbs/roots/plants for some of the natives at local nurseries: Indian Ricegrass (Achnatherum ...
view the full question and answer

Low-maintenance grass for retention pond
December 21, 2012 - I would like to know what would be a low-growing grass to put down for a water retention pond. We have clay and rocky soil. The incline of the sides of the retention pond are about 20 feet with gra...
view the full question and answer

Ground cover to withstand dog traffic in Michigan
November 02, 2010 - I need a soft ground cover that will grow in sand, and be able to take four big dogs that love to run in the yard. Grass just doesn't make it. Someone suggested that groundcover might work. Thanks...
view the full question and answer

Native grasses for Gilmer TX
March 01, 2009 - I would like to get some native grasses growing on our farm that are good for wildlife - barnyard grass - sedges - smartweed - have read and heard that all I need to do is disc and fertilize - yes/no ...
view the full question and answer

Additional screening under yaupons in Georgetown TX
November 09, 2011 - We live on a corner and have a berm along the south side of our yard which blocks our backyard from the street. It was planted with uprights yaupons. With the drought, deer have eaten the bottom por...
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