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?


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

Saturday - April 20, 2013

From: Topeka, KS
Region: Midwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Small shrubs for landscape in Kansas
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I am intersted in small shrubs for the landscaping in front of our house located in Topeka,KS. Many of the shrubs I looked at are 5 foot in width in height. The plants will receive morning sun.


Please visit our Kansas Recommended page to find a list of plants that are native to Kansas and commerically available for landscaping.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH feature to search for shrubs of the size you want.   Choose "Shrub" from GENERAL APPEARANCE and the height you want under HEIGHT (IN FEET).  You can choose other criteria as well, if you wish.   I chose shrubs 1-3' and 3-6' and have the following recommendations:

Ceanothus americanus (New jersey tea)

Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (Coralberry)

Amorpha canescens (Leadplant)

I also did a search in our Native Plant Database using the COMBINATION SEARCH option and chose "Kansas" from Select State or Province and "Shrub" from General Appearance and the same height and found another one for you.   You should try these to searches yourself to see if you find anything else you like.

Rhus trilobata (Skunkbush sumac)   Here are photos and more information from Western New Mexico University.


From the Image Gallery

New jersey tea
Ceanothus americanus

New jersey tea
Ceanothus americanus

Symphoricarpos orbiculatus

Amorpha canescens

More Shrubs Questions

What fertilizer can make potted plants flower in Austin, TX?
July 05, 2011 - I have a Lantana and esmarelda planted in large pots. They froze last winter but have both come back strong except they do not bloom even though I have fertilized. Is there something special I need ...
view the full question and answer

Juniperus Toxic to Pets?
October 15, 2013 - Are blue rug juniper plants toxic to dogs?
view the full question and answer

Non-blooming climbing rose in Conroe, TX
October 09, 2009 - I have a climbing rose and it has never bloomed and has no thorns, it was a cutting from another rose bush. I have given it water and fertilize and have mulch around it also.
view the full question and answer

Need a privacy screen of native plants for swimming pool in Garden Ridge, TX
February 10, 2013 - We are building a pool and would like to use native plants as a screen around the fence, preferably a shrub that grows quickly to about 6 feet. Any suggestions? Thanks.
view the full question and answer

Landscaping plant for Austin
September 01, 2011 - Great site! Have gotten lots of ideas. We're about to start construction on a fairly major landscaping project: raised beds/privacy screen. We're at the top of a hill in the Hill Country just wes...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center