En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Shrubs for area around underground storm shelter

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
1 rating

Monday - May 27, 2013

From: Adairsville, GA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Shrubs for area around underground storm shelter
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We want to plant shrubs around our underground storm shelter to divide it from our parking area. Obviously, this is to avoid having someone drive on top of the shelter. What native shrub to North GA (half way between Chattanooga & Atlanta) would you suggest? The roots do not need to go too deep as to not damage the shelter.

ANSWER:

With our Georgia Recommended list of commercially available native plants for landscaping in the state, I used the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option and chose "Shrubs" from General Appearance to narrow the list to 81 species.  It occurred to me that you might like to have evergreen shrubs so I used the NARROW YOUR SEARCH again on that list to choose "Evergreen" from Leaf Retention.  This resulted in 18 choices.  Below are seven that I chose from that list.   To be sure that these shrubs grew in Bartow County, I scrolled to the bottom of each species page to the Additional Resources area and clicked on the USDA link.  On the USDA Plants Database for each species there is a distribution map.  By clicking on Georgia on that map you can see a county distribution map for location of species in Georgia.   All the shrubs below occur in Bartow County or in an adjacent county.  They are of different sizes, but most of the larger ones can be pruned to maintain the desired size.  If you are interested in deciduous shrubs or some other type of plant, you can repeat the search on the Georgia Recommended page and enter your own criteria.

Ilex glabra (Inkberry) is evergreen and grows 6-12 feet tall.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.

Ilex vomitoria (Yaupon) is evergreen and female shrubs have ornamental red berries eaten by birds.  A nearby male shrub is necessary for pollinating flowers that produce the berries.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.

Kalmia latifolia (Mountain laurel) is evergreen and produces beautiful blossoms.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.

Leucothoe fontanesiana (Drooping leucothoe) is evergreen and grows 3-5 feet tall.   Here is more information from Floridata.

Lyonia lucida (Fetterbush lyonia) is evergreen and grows 3-6 feet tall.  Here is more information from Floridata.

Rhododendron catawbiense (Catawba rosebay) is evergreen and grows 6-20 feet tall.  Here is more information for North Carolina State University.

Rhododendron maximum (Great laurel) is evergreen and grows 4-15 feet tal with beautiful blossoms.  Here is more information from Virginia Tech.

 

From the Image Gallery


Inkberry
Ilex glabra

Yaupon
Ilex vomitoria

Mountain laurel
Kalmia latifolia

Drooping leucothoe
Leucothoe fontanesiana

Fetterbush lyonia
Lyonia lucida

Catawba rosebay
Rhododendron catawbiense

Great laurel
Rhododendron maximum

More Shrubs Questions

Smarty Plants on lantana in Dallas
September 14, 2005 - For several years, the lantana plants in my backyard in Dallas grew and bloomed all Summer and Fall until the first real cold snap. I've loved having a native plant that didn't need constant care a...
view the full question and answer

Small shrub with thorns for Austin
February 08, 2010 - I'm looking for a shade-tolerant 2-3' shrub with thorns, native to Texas (ideally central Texas) - an alternative to Barberry? Does such a plant exist?
view the full question and answer

Groundcovers over roots in Roeland Park KS
June 18, 2013 - Large Hackberry tree (aprox 50+years) roots are popping up above ground making mowing under/around it impossible. Is there a plant, ground cover, something I can plant, or cover the roots with that w...
view the full question and answer

Need a good plant for Clayton, NC.
August 23, 2012 - What would be a good plant for Clayton,NC for this time of year. I would like for it to come back every year so I don't have to replant. I have several full sun areas that I need to cover in the fron...
view the full question and answer

Freeze-back of Hamelia patens in winter in Texas
October 03, 2008 - Will the hamelia patens freeze back in the winter ?
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