Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

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?

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
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 - March 04, 2008

From: Cheboygan, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Groundcovers, Ferns, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs, Vines
Title: Native plants for memorial garden in Michigan
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I want to start a memorial garden for my daughter. I live in northern Michigan and the area has very tall white pines we have pruned them up about 15' so the area does get partial sun. Which plants will grow under the pines. I would like some ground cover and vines to climb a wattle fence. Thank you

ANSWER:

There are lots of choices for groundcovers for Michigan that should do well in your daughter's memorial garden. Some of them will grow in partial shade, a few will grow in full shade, and others will grow in sun, partial shade and shade.

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick)

Asarum canadense (Canadian wildginger)

Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)

Cornus canadensis (bunchberry dogwood)

Fragaria virginiana (Virginia strawberry)

Geranium maculatum (spotted geranium)

Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)

Phlox pilosa (downy phlox)

Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)

Viola sororia (common blue violet)

Viola pedata (birdfoot violet)

Here are vines that are native to Michigan

Celastrus scandens (American bittersweet)

Campsis radicans (trumpet creeper)

Clematis occidentalis var. occidentalis (western blue virginsbower)

Clematis virginiana (devil's darning needles)

Lonicera sempervirens (trumpet honeysuckle)

Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)

Wisteria frutescens (American wisteria)

You can also find an entire list of native species recommended for Michigan or you can make your own list by doing a "Combination Search" on the Native Plant Database.


Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Asarum canadense

Carex pensylvanica

Cornus canadensis

Fragaria virginiana

Geranium maculatum

Mitchella repens

Phlox pilosa

Polystichum acrostichoides

Viola sororia

Viola pedata

Celastrus scandens

Campsis radicans

Clematis occidentalis var. occidentalis

Clematis virginiana



Parthenocissus quinquefolia

Wisteria frutescens

 

 

More Groundcovers Questions

Groundcover for clay soil in Southern California
August 08, 2012 - I live in Southern California and have hard packed clay soil in my yard. Could you recommend ground cover that would be green, low to the ground, require little water and survive in clay? I can't a...
view the full question and answer

Invasive non-native mulberry and groundcover in Jacksonville FL
October 02, 2011 - Northeast Florida (Jacksonville) inland. My mulberry tree provides dense shade in the summer and filtered light the other seasons, leaving sand in its growing area. What fast growing ground cover woul...
view the full question and answer

Drought tolerant ground cover for Midlothian, TX
June 17, 2012 - I'm looking for a fast, low ground cover. That is drought tolerant for a large slope.
view the full question and answer

Native Groundcover for High Activity Location in Austin, TX
October 01, 2010 - Howdy! We live in South Austin and have a smallish backyard that we're perennially working on. We have two young, very active dogs that spend a lot of time RUNNING and we never can keep ground cover ...
view the full question and answer

Groundcover for Shade in Spicewood
September 16, 2015 - We live in Spicewood area in Austin, TX. Our front yard is yellow almost all summer, I was thinking of replacing lawn with a ground cover which can live on once a week sprinkler and no mowing. Also th...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.