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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - February 21, 2005

From: Rowlett, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Native plants for moist and shady yard in Rowlett, TX
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have an area of my yard that has drainage issues. It stays quite moist most of the time and is shady a large part of the day. I would like to plant some native plants in that area. Maybe something that would give a home to lizards, frogs or toads. I have seen several in the area. What would work best?

ANSWER:

Here is a list of plants, both large and small, that like moist soil and shade and are commercially available. Some of them are attractive to insects which should, in turn, attract lizards, frogs, and toads. Also, you can do your own search on our web page in the Native Plants Database and find even more possibilities. Select Combination Search from the options and then select "Shade" and "Moist" under Growing Conditions and "Texas" under Select State.

Small flowering plants: cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis), red columbine (Aquilegia canadensis), green dragon (Arisaema dracontium), chocolate flower (Berlandiera lyrata), blue mistflower (Conoclinium coelestinum), white gaura (Gaura lindheimeri), scarlet sage (Salvia coccinea), meadow violet (Viola sororia).

Ferns and grasses: cinnamon fern (Osmunda cinnamomea), inland sea oats (Chasmanthium latifolium).

Shrubs: wax myrtle (Morella cerifera), elderberry (Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis), American beautyberry (Callicarpa americana).
 

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