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

Sunday - March 27, 2005

From: Longview, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Luring wildlife in Longview
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in Longview, Texas and am in the process of trying to restore a natural habitat for wildlife in my area. Could you give me a list of plants that are native specific so that I can lure local birds, butterflies, etc.?

ANSWER:

There are two articles, "Butterfly Gardening Resources" and "Wildlife Gardening Bibliography" in our Native Plant Library to download in PDF format that you might find useful. Plants with berries attract many birds and small mammals and those with red flowers attract hummingbirds. Butterflies are attracted to plants with yellow, blue, and purple flowers. You can have a combination of trees, shrubs, wildflowers, and grasses that will fill these requirements. For small trees you might consider all or any of three small trees of the genus Ilex, Possum haw (Ilex decidua), American holly (I. opaca), and Yaupon (I. vomitoria). Flowering dogwood and Cherry laurel (Prunus caroliniana) are two more choices for small trees. A small tree that would attract hummingbirds is Red buckeye (Aesculus pavia), as would these two vines, Crossvine (Bignonia capreolata and Trumpet-creeper Campsis radicans). A couple of small bushes, Coral-berry (Symphoricarpos orbiculatus) and American beauty-berry (Callicarpa americana), with their colorful fruits are also good candidates for attracting birds. Several grasses native to East Texas attract butterflies and birds: Sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula), Inland sea oats (Chasmanthium latifolium), Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans and Little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium). For herbaceous wildflowers you might consider Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), Cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis), and Lance-leaved coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata). There are many more possibilities for East Texas. Look around you and see what plants you like. Once you have identified them you can look them up in the Native Plants Database by their common or scientific names. On the page for each individual plant be sure to click on "Benefits" at the top of the page to learn if the plant attracts wildlife. You can also check for nurseries and seed companies in your area that specialize in native plants in our Suppliers Directory.
 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Dutchman's pipe vine dying in Fitchburg ME
August 15, 2012 - I have 2 dutchmans pipe vines they have been growing for over 20 years. Now all of a sudden the foliage is wilting and dying. The other one is completely fine. What would cause this?
view the full question and answer

Non-toxic plants for dog yard from Freeport PA
June 24, 2012 - I'm looking for wildlife-friendly native plants that aren't toxic to dogs. I have a place for some small shrubs and/or flowers. And a climbing vine that I could train on a trellis would work espec...
view the full question and answer

Latin name for botany mist in McAllen TX
November 10, 2009 - What is the latin name or formal name of botany mist which is a Queen butterfly nectar source in the Rio Grande Valley?
view the full question and answer

Native annuals for pollinators in King County, Washington
February 06, 2014 - I live in King County, Washington State, and I have a plot in a community garden. Rather than plant food, I'd like to attract pollinators. I need to use native annuals rather than perennials as the c...
view the full question and answer

Forage plants for deer in Central Texas
December 06, 2014 - Looking for best forage plants and seed for deer forage, Canyon Lake-New Braunfels, Tx. Have searched listings, but areas are NE or other and not relevant to my location. Your time much appreciated. ...
view the full question and answer

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