Explore Plants

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
    
 

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 - August 06, 2013

From: Kerrville, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Drought Tolerant, Erosion Control, Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs
Title: Erosion tolerant plants for shade from Kerrville TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have just cleared a lot of cedar out of a small draw and would like to know the best groundcovers, shrubs, etc. to plant to hold the soil. Deep shade most of the day.

ANSWER:

We just answered a very similar question, with one glaring difference - you are looking for shade plants, which may be a real problem. This time we are going to our full Native Plant Database so we will have more possibilities to choose from. We are in hopes that the draw gets some water from time to time and that will assist us in finding plants for your situation. Please read our similar question first, and then we will go to our database and, using the list of specifications on the right-hand side of the page, select on Texas, then "grass or grass-like" for Habit, "dry" for Soil Moisture and both shade (2 hour or less of sun a day) and "part shade" (2 to 6 hours of sun a day) under Light Requirements. After we run that search, we will run additional searches for the Habits of "shrubs" and "herbs' (herbaceous blooming plants) and see what results we get. We have given you 4 possibillities each for Habit. We suggest, since we really don't know enough about the environment where you propose to grow these plants, that you run the searches for yourself. Each time you select a plant, go to our webpage on that plant,  study its light and moisture requirements, then go down the page to Additional Resources. Click on "Find (plant name) in USDA Plants". When you get the map of North America, the green  states on that map record that plant as growing natively. Click on Texas and you will get a map with the counties green where that plant grows. This helps us, and we hope it helps you, determine if the soils, climate and rainfall in your area are appropriate to that plant.

Grass or grasslike plants for shade:

Carex planostachys (Cedar sedge)

Chloris virgata (Feather fingergrass)

Melica nitens (Three-flower melic)

Nassella tenuissima (Mexican feathergrass)

Shrubs for Shade:

Acacia angustissima (Prairie acacia)

Aesculus pavia var. pavia (Scarlet buckeye)

Amorpha roemeriana (Roemer's false indigo)

Baccharis neglecta (False willow)

Herbaceous blooming plants for shade:

Ageratina altissima (White snakeroot)

Amblyolepis setigera (Huisache daisy)

Asclepias tuberosa (Butterflyweed)

Callirhoe involucrata (Winecup)

 

From the Image Gallery


Feather fingergrass
Chloris virgata

Three-flower melic
Melica nitens

Mexican feathergrass
Nassella tenuissima

Prairie acacia
Acacia angustissima

Roemer's false indigo
Amorpha roemeriana

False willow
Baccharis neglecta

White snakeroot
Ageratina altissima

Huisache daisy
Amblyolepis setigera

Butterflyweed
Asclepias tuberosa

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Difficult slope in Tarrytown NY
March 03, 2009 - I hope you can help. Is there a way to plant some native shrubs and plants on a steep slope that is filled in some areas with rock without having to tier the slope? The section is approximately 50' w...
view the full question and answer

Ticks on native grasses in Katy, TX.
July 23, 2012 - Are there native grasses that are less susceptible to tick infestation than others?
view the full question and answer

Narrow strip of groundcover from Sonora TX
April 29, 2013 - I have an area that is right under my patio about 12 feet by 1 ft. I'm looking for something to plant in there. It has afternoon sun, morning shade. I live in SW Texas so it is hot. but would like so...
view the full question and answer

Using salt to kill bermuda grass
May 12, 2009 - (Submitting to site per your request on Facebook, plus an added bit o'info) I am considering trying to kill off the bermuda grass around my raised bed with salt. Vinegar isn't cutting it.. S'pos...
view the full question and answer

Native lawn replacement for shady areas in Austin
September 11, 2013 - Our front lawn was totally destroyed this summer during some remodeling construction. I am interested in replacing it with native grasses, but we have several oak trees that keep the area fairly shady...
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.