Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

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
4 ratings

Wednesday - April 16, 2008

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Perennial phlox for partial shade
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I am planting a butterfly garden in a plot that gets sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon. I read that phlox does well in partial-shade areas, and was wondering which native, perennial phlox would be best.

ANSWER:

There are approximately 50 plants of the genus Phlox in our Native Plant Database. Unfortunately, only seven of those are naturally distributed in Texas, and three of those are annuals. However, all are considered attractive to butterflies, and all are considered moist woodland plants, so they should do very well in Houston. We are going to list the annuals, as well, even though you asked for perennials. The annuals will reseed themselves if they're happy in their location, and will give you more variety in your selections.

ANNUALS

Phlox drummondii (annual phlox)

Phlox drummondii ssp. drummondii (annual phlox)

Phlox glabriflora (Rio Grande phlox)

PERENNIALS

Phlox divaricata (wild blue phlox)

Phlox divaricata ssp. laphamii (Lapham's phlox) - Images of this plant

Phlox nivalis (trailing phlox)

Phlox pilosa (downy phlox)

When you are ready to begin your phlox garden, here is a list of Native Plant Suppliers for the Houston area.


Phlox drummondii

Phlox drummondii ssp. drummondii

Phlox glabriflora

Phlox divaricata

Phlox nivalis

Phlox pilosa

 

 

 

 

More Shade Tolerant Questions

Vines for a shady porch in Oregon
February 22, 2010 - My husband and I just bought our first home this fall in St. Johns, Portland. We would like to grow a vine on our front porch, but it is in full shade. It faces north east. We planted some jasmine vin...
view the full question and answer

Groundcover to prevent erosion in Florida
November 04, 2012 - I live on a hill and put in a new side driveway and now I am seeing erosion along the driveway and can see the bottom of my concrete. Grass won't grow because its all shaded. What would be the best g...
view the full question and answer

Replacement for Love Grass in Michigan
July 27, 2015 - need a replacement for Love Grass at Shops of Willow Bend in Plano. The entire perimeter of this mall has Bermuda and Love Grass. The Elms and Oaks have grown so the Love Grass is mostly gone. Ther...
view the full question and answer

Where to find Horseherb seed
August 02, 2015 - I would like to purchase some Horseherb seeds. Can you tell me where I can do that? Either locally or on line. Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Groundcovers & Shrubs for Shade in North Carolina
April 30, 2013 - Mr Smarty Pants, My neighbor planted cypress trees as a border between his yard and ours and it is sucking up every drop of water and nutrient. We also have a purple plum in the area which creates ...
view the full question and answer

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