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

Friday - April 26, 2013

From: The Woodlands, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Non-Natives, Pests, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Dog-proof grass from The Woodlands TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford


I am looking for a hardy grass that can tolerate female dogs urine. Zoysia was suggested but I am concerned about it being invasive. Any suggestions?


Zoysia is a warm-season grass native to China and Japan which can grow in some shade but does not always perform well there. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, home of Mr. Smarty Plants, is committed to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which those plants are being grown; in your case, Montgomery County, TX. Here is an article from eHow Home on Problems with Zoysia Grass and a previous Mr. Smarty Plants answer on the same subject.

Since we are therefore not experts on Zoysia grass, we will instead address your question in terms of grasses and/or plants in general. Not being a dog owner, this particular Smarty Plants Team member will have to go back to the Internet. From Texas A & M Horticulture Aggie Archives "Dog-On It" Lawn Problems. Our take on this article is that the dog needs a new bathroom. Again, out of Mr. Smarty Plants' expertise.



More Invasive Plants Questions

Invasive plants in native plant area from Austin
May 15, 2012 - Why do invasive plants grow in native plant territory?
view the full question and answer

Advisability of growing Silybum marianum (Milk thistle)
November 26, 2013 - I just received a load of clay-mix-dirt - and after our recent rains noticed the pile sprouting what looks like "Milk Thistle." Lots of them. The leaves are spiny and variegated - quite pretty. ...
view the full question and answer

Help with control of small, invasive groundcover
April 16, 2012 - I have a very invasive ground cover creeping into my yard. I've tried to identify it and it's similar to creeping charlie or garlic mustard. Leaves are triangular with jagged edges, small purple f...
view the full question and answer

Difference between invasive Chinese and Japanese wisterias and native wisteria
September 12, 2014 - Dear Mr or Ms Smarty Plants, Is there any way I can tell for sure if my wisteria is native? I bought it at a place when it was in bloom that sold a lot of native plants. I Would like to know for sure...
view the full question and answer

How to eradicate chameleon plant (Houttuynia cordata)
February 10, 2008 - How do I get rid of a invasive ground covering plant called Camelion without hurting the ground so I can plant something else?
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.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center