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
Not Yet Rated

Friday - May 08, 2009

From: Leavenworth, KS
Region: Midwest
Topic: Erosion Control, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Native plants for eroding hillside in Kansas
Answered by: Nina Hawkins

QUESTION:

We have a creek running thru our property and the hill running down to it is about 30 feet tall, in some places almost straight down, some sloping. Some is in shade, some full sun. We would like some flowering plants, if possible, that will aid with erosion since the rain water is washing the hillside.

ANSWER:

Your best bet for effective erosion control is definitely grasses because their fibrous roots hold soil very well.  But there's certainly no reason that should stop you from having wildflowers too.  Grasses are not to be underestimated - they provide interest when your flowers aren't blooming and many look great en masse.  You can find a wide variety of native plants that are recommended for your area on our Recommended Species page, where you can also narrow your search to certain characteristics and choose the water and light requirements specific to a spot on your hillside.  Below are some beautiful grasses and a few wildflowers that often grow among grasses.  These plants are native to Kansas and several are known to reseed freely to form colonies.    

Schizachyrium scoparium (little bluestem)

Koeleria macrantha (prairie Junegrass)

Bouteloua curtipendula (sideoats grama)

Sorghastrum nutans (Indiangrass)

Echinacea angustifolia (blacksamson echinacea)

Liatris pycnostachya (prairie blazing star)

Tradescantia ohiensis (bluejacket)

Chamaecrista fasciculata (partridge pea)


Schizachyrium scoparium

Koeleria macrantha

Bouteloua curtipendula

Sorghastrum nutans

Echinacea angustifolia

Liatris pycnostachya

Tradescantia ohiensis

Chamaecrista fasciculata

 

 

More Erosion Control Questions

Plants to stop creek bank erosion in North Carolina
June 26, 2009 - Hi: I live in NC where most of the dirt is clay based. I have a small creek behind my house that is eroding. The creek overflows when there is a heavy rain and as a result, gradual erosion. My g...
view the full question and answer

Native plants for controlling erosion in Fairmont WV
August 30, 2010 - I'm interested in finding native plants, either perennials or grasses, that would help control erosion on a fairly steep slope. The area is partly shaded.
view the full question and answer

Plants to prevent erosion on slope in Texas
June 19, 2010 - We have an erosion problem developing on the low side of a gently sloping hill. We are in clay soil at the base of the hill with oaks and pines. We have a right of way that is without trees forty fee...
view the full question and answer

Plants for erosion control in southern Maryland
September 03, 2009 - Would you recommend a plant that would act as erosion control for woodlands in Southern Maryland? The soil has a high clay content with a mature hardwoods population.The current erosion is significant...
view the full question and answer

Groundcover for Bonsall, CA
October 17, 2012 - I live in Bonsall, CA. (San Diego) I have 3 acres, flat and sloped that are graded dirt. (DG and sheep poop from previous owner). It is getting close to mud season and I'd like to plant winter cover...
view the full question and answer

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