En Español

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - November 26, 2013

From: College Station, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Soils
Title: Native plants suitable for clay soils in College Station, Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton


Where might I find a list of native plants suitable for clay soils in the College Station TX area?


On our Recommended Species page you can click on East Texas on the map to get a list of commercially available native plants for your area.  On the Texas-East Recommended page you can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option in the sidebar to limit the list by the plants' general appearance (i.e., tree, vine, shrub, etc.), light requirement, soil moisture, etc.  For instance, if you choose 'Shrub' under General Appearance, 'Part shade -' under Light Requirement and 'Dry -' under Soil Moisture, you will get a list of 10 plants.  On each of these 10 species' pages under "Growing Conditions" you should find 'Soil Description'.  From that list, if you look at 'Soil Description' on the Erythrina herbacea (Coralbean) page, you will see that it has 'clay' under its 'Soil Description'; but Ceanothus americanus (New jersey tea) does not show 'clay' on its 'Soil Description' list.  By varying your criteria to fit your site, you should be able to locate a good number of plants that will grow well in clay soils.


More Soils Questions

Garden instructions from Austin
June 12, 2013 - I'm a beginning gardener putting in some new landscaping in my front yard in north central Austin, TX. The yard faces almost due east, so it gets full sun until early afternoon, when the house's sha...
view the full question and answer

Proper soil for Blackfoot daisy (Melampodium leucanthum)
April 18, 2006 - I live in San Antonio. Have taken landscape course at the center several years ago-(fabulous)! I am putting in a raised portion of the garden this year with Blackfoot Daisies. Can you tell me where...
view the full question and answer

Expanded Shale Availability in Austin Area
March 18, 2016 - Where can you find expanded shale in bulk or bag in the Austin area?
view the full question and answer

Growing Osage Orange in Caliche in Austin
October 23, 2015 - Does Osage Orange tree grow in caliche? Do nurseries carry it?
view the full question and answer

Problem with Adding 5 inches of Mulch and Soil Under Juniper
July 03, 2016 - My landscaper added about 3" of mulch and 2" of dirt under my ashe junipers to create a planting bed. Several have turned gold/yellowish this winter including a female tree. They are still flexible an...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center