Rent Shop 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
Not Yet Rated

Monday - July 14, 2008

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Groundcovers
Title: Natural groundcovers beneath live oaks in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We are moving to a home in NW Austin set in a forest of live oaks (15 of them). What plants are the natural groundcovers? We want to replace the 'grass' completely. There is no sun so we don't believe we can use buffalo grass which would be our preference.

ANSWER:

These groundcovers will spread in the dappled shade of live oaks. They are all perennials, but not all necessarily evergreen. In a mild Winter, they should remain at least partly green.

Hydrocotyle bonariensis (largeleaf pennywort)

Phyla nodiflora (turkey tangle fogfruit)

Calyptocarpus vialis (straggler daisy)

Dichondra argentea (silver ponysfoot)


Hydrocotyle bonariensis

Phyla nodiflora

Calyptocarpus vialis

Dichondra argentea

 

 

More Groundcovers Questions

Native Grasses for Houston, TX
April 06, 2015 - What native grasses can I use for my lawn in Houston, TX? It appears that Habiturf is not recommended for our climate. Is there another variety of seed available yet that I can use to start a small ...
view the full question and answer

Ground covering around cypresses in pool area
July 25, 2008 - We have multiple cypress trees planted along our pool area..they shed way too much..but I'm looking for something to put under and around them over the dirt..do you suggest wood chips or a ground cov...
view the full question and answer

Groundcover for under live oak in Mississippi
August 26, 2013 - I need a non-invasive ground cover to plant under my live oak.
view the full question and answer

Shade tolerant groundcover plants for Tarrant County, Texas
November 01, 2011 - I live in far NE Tarrant County (Ft Worth), TX and need a groundcover that can tolerate complete shade and poor, rocky, clay soil. I need mostly for erosion control, and needs to be relatively low
view the full question and answer

New gardener on lawn for Poolville TX
April 28, 2012 - I have never had the opportunity to have a nice yard until recently when I got married. My husband loves a nice yard and we have worked very hard and put in hours of work. We are learning by trial a...
view the full question and answer

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